Mohau Modisakeng was born in Soweto in 1986, as uprisings and activism brought South African apartheid to an end. Growing up during this transitional period, the artist witnessed the aspirations of Black South Africans for a post-colonial nation and the negative effects of global power structures on the reformed country. In this video, the movements of the men are a metaphor for the struggle of Black South Africans to overcome colonialism and achieve national liberation. Their ascending gestures, which never reach fulfi llment, encapsulate the hopes, determination, and frustrations of post-colonial nations. The title of the video, Ga Bose Gangwe, is taken from a Setswana (a Bantu language spoken in Southern Africa) proverb, phiri o rile ga bo se gangwe, that translates to "Better luck next time" or "Do or try again."
From the 2023 exhibition Mohau Modisakeng: Ga bose gangwe, curated by Alisa Swindell, Associate Curator of Photography
Jenkins Johnson Gallery, Brooklyn, New York; sold to present collection, 2022.
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