see: magazine article
When the Belly Is Full the Brain Starts to Think: Craft and Criticism in the Work of Daniel Halter
Andrew Hennlich 2012
The democratization of technology in the digital age allows artists to produce films, music, and other media at much lower costs, purportedly allowing the user control of the means of production. Conversely, handcrafted goods often associated with the outmoded (including analogue recording technologies, vinyl records, and art such as William Kentridge’s laborious animations) not only retain their place within the digital age, they resist the totalizing technological forces creating a dialectical pairing between the new and the outmoded in contemporary art. Zimbabwean-born artist Daniel Halter works in this dichotomy between the mass-produced and the bespoke object. Halter frequently uses curio crafts to engage with the Zimbabwean dollar’s hyperinflation thus recontextualizing work and value. His work also considers the modes of production and consumption that tie Zimbabwe to Western perceptions of Africa. Halter’s Yes Boss (2006) is a handwoven image displaying a map of a farming region of Zimbabwe. The warp is made of pieces of the map and the weft is formed from shredded $5,000 banknotes and gold thread. The woven image evokes a number of traditional West African ceremonial wraps that emerged when the British introduced silk to Africa. The dual European and pan-African textile is used in Yes Boss to refer to two difficult aspects of Zimbabwe’s post-colonial history: inflation, and president Robert Mugabe’s land redistribution policies.
The redistribution of white-owned farmland is evoked in Yes Boss’s map of former farming plots. While initially purchased for fair prices, in 2000 Mugabe supporters forcibly seized approximately 14 million hectares of land, resulting in the beating and murder of white farm owners. Despite redistributing in the name of giving land to blacks, it has largely gone to Mugabe supporters. Because of the small size of the parcels, nepotistic redistribution, and a lack of expertise, agricultural production has declined and led to malnourishment in Zimbabwe. The second, and related, issue is the Zimbabwean dollar’s rapid inflation as the government printed the necessary currency to meet its needs, leading to estimated inflation of close to two trillion percent a year and bread prices of nearly $10,000 for a single loaf. In this endlessly expandable domain of inflation and the dispossession of production, Yes Boss is a specific, crafted object made from something that is itself endlessly disposable. Yes Boss as a work of art—and artworks frequently being lodged in questions of value—is made of currency that is, in essence, without value. This pairing of disposability and the handmade gives the work an ironic quality. The repurposing through a loss of value also recalls the land appropriation that led to a decline of agricultural production.
Halter’s production of outmoded forms of visual culture turns towards the antiquated in its handmade form. His work belongs to a recent past, much like the outmoded in Walter Benjamin’s “Paris, the Capital of the Nineteenth Century”. Benjamin’s analysis of the Haussmannization of Paris expresses anxiety over the remaking of the city as the potential for new and open movement through the streets paradoxically destroyed the potential for political resistance. Haussmannization made going to the barricades impossible; a refashioning of social space that highlights Mugabe’s ideology of land redistribution to open Zimbabwe to its people. In reality, land redistribution becomes an ideological screen for nepotistic control and a violent repression of dissent. The government in each instance opens social spaces while using that openness to facilitate a repression of resistance to its sovereign power. Under Hausmannization Benjamin saw art being put into the service of technology, removing traces of the everyday “imprinted” in Parisian social space. These imprints are preserved in Halter’s use of maps; they exist as traces of something lost and call attention to the famines in Zimbabwe today. Furthermore, Halter’s woven image does not just simply recall the loss of white farms, its “yes boss” is suggestive of a farm labourer responding to the owner, documenting a trace of colonial power paradigms within the map’s image as well.
As a handmade African object Yes Boss imagines a politics of “Africanness.” It does not advocate a return to white control, but rather, reveals the ideology of newness with which Mugabe tries to remake Zimbabwe. It is impossible to return to a pre-colonial existence, and Mugabe’s appeals to do so are made for political gain, resulting in further losses of vital goods. Yes Boss’s form highlights this dialectical problem: its weft of reproducible currency and warp of old farming maps suggest a crisis emerging from this situation of colonial power and black empowerment. Yes Boss acknowledges the colonial relationship without giving in to simple ideologies of the new.
Halter’s remaking of woven textiles considers how, in the technological and fast-paced world of the West, ideologies of the “old” (as Benjamin reminds us, the construction of new architecture in Paris represented itself ahistorically as old and timeless) persist about Africa. Halter’s curios ask how traditional forms of African culture are consumed in the West. This relationship between the West and Africa is explored in Halter’s video, Untitled (Zimbabwean Queen of the Rave), which examines the popularity of Zimbabwean singer Rozalla’s hit song “Everybody’s Free (To Feel Good).” The video features Rozalla’s song and images of British youths dancing at raves juxtaposed with pictures of riots and protests in Zimbabwe. Both of these scenes are portrayed as dances featuring the mass movement of people and both have been associated with revolutionary politics yet they raise the question of who is free to “feel good.” Largely fueled by ecstasy and other drugs, rave culture is seen as a marginal and transgressive space in Britain, whereas the revolution for access to democratic representation, food, and land is met with violence. Few are free to “feel good” in Zimbabwe as the access to safety and sustainability is controlled by Mugabe’s regime.
A related project is Halter’s Stone Tablets/Bitter Pills (2005) which features soapstone sculptures (a Shona artform in Zimbabwe, early sculptures represented eagles as ancestral objects, but soapstone sculptures are better known as a modern production of abstract forms) upon which logos such as a star, a skull and cross bones, or the Mercedes-Benz logo commonly found on ecstasy tablets are carved. Unlike the pills themselves these sculptures are about the size of a landmine. The allusion to consumptiveness (that is, as sculptures of things one ingests) is evocative of tourists on safari purchasing these curios. Markets found throughout Africa sell curios, such as soapstone sculptures, in endless numbers to tourists willing to buy them. These items lose some of their cultural impact upon their return to the West: it is debatable if those who purchase a mask, Basotho blanket, or Shona sculpture engage with their intended meaning. Instead, they most likely return to the Western mantle as symbols of singular “Africanness” despite both weaving and soapstone carving having developed from colonial encounters and becoming ahistorical objects in the process.
Likewise, Rozalla becomes a singular image of Zimbabwe in a world of consumptive 90’s drug culture. This discord within Halter’s imagery reveals the paradoxes that arise as kids in Britain dance in fields and other venues which have largely been co-opted by business ventures, while at the same time dispossession and violence rages in its former colony’s move to redistribute land. To “take” culturally becomes sinister—the pill is no longer the guarantor of a “good night” but a landmine: it holds the potential to destroy or maim. The ecstasy tablet as an image of excess and consumption turns the discussion back towards the rates of inflation and saturation. (In the UK ecstasy tablets for most of the past decade were incredibly cheap and pills could be bought for a little over a pound.) This market saturation, like the inflation of currency in Zimbabwe, has brought prices down, bringing one back to the conflict hailed by Halter’s project: in the UK capitalism and democracy make it “free” to feel good. The opposite is true for those in Zimbabwe where the endless reproduction of money has priced Zimbabweans out of basic goods and services. The bitter pill left for Africans to consume is surely lacking any sustenance.
Halter’s reappropriation of traditional craft makes use of the outmoded but also calls attention to the flavor-of-the-month reproducibility of pop stars such as Rozalla and the culture of cheap drug consumption that accompanies it. This reproducibility and consumption within rave culture highlights the disposability of capitalism’s desire to continually make things new. To produce handmade crafts in the era of late capitalism raises the question of how these objects are consumed. They exist as specific and handmade yet cheapened in African curio markets. The curio enters a network of the synthetic consumption of Africanness, much like ecstasy, bringing to bear the endless disposability in capitalist economies.
Western nations also endured mass inflation in Europe and the United States during the Great Depression of the 1930s. Halter enters into this question of reification, asking: when everything is endlessly expandable how do people find worth in the work they produce? In Zimbabwe, the spiraling number of zeros attached to the dollar took on a life of its own, estranging the workers from the value of their labour as it yielded less ability to provide sustenance, security, or stability. Mass production and the fluctuation of value change the imprints of social relations upon these commodities when production becomes defined by money.
Like the Dadaists working in Weimar Germany, Halter appropriates the discarded or devalued, remaking it as a form of cultural critique. Thus the Zimbabwean dollar is no longer tied to the swirling zeros that undercut its ability to provide basic goods for survival. Halter’s specificity preserves traces of the human narratives of farms and farm labour and the loss of these histories through the denial of human rights amid the increasingly disposable approach the West takes to Africa. The use of the map in Yes Boss preserves the history present in the commodity while documenting the loss of these farmers’ livelihoods. Production, through this conscious turn towards craft, gives the previously disposable lost maps, curio craft, and even inflated money, a sense of agency in narrating Zimbabwe’s violence and dispossession.
As curios, Halter’s sculptures and woven maps change the notion of these relationships. Not only is it the intent of specificity and craft to counter the mass circulation of these items as curios and to revalue those peoples and histories that have been devalued, but to change how we think about these items as artworks. Halter’s work makes traditional craft part of a political network and considers these works as art rather than banal decoration, thus imbuing their production with a sense of agency.
Halter’s repurposing of handmade craft objects preserves traces of the past histories of loss and dispossession in Zimbabwe under Mugabe. Mealie Pip, an engraved maize kernel bearing the phrase, “When the belly is full, the brain starts to think,” strikes at the crux of his work, insisting as it does on the necessity of providing sustenance for Zimbabweans, but also shows us that political consciousness can emerge from highlighting its lack. Halter’s Benjaminian imprints sow a kernel of historicity and critique into the technological networks of financial exchange and the ideologies of a timeless Africa.
 David Smith, “Mugabe Allies Own 40% of Land Seized from White Farmers,” The Guardian, November 30, 2010.
Sebastien Berger, “Zimbabwe Inflation hits 231 Million Per cent,” The Telegraph, October 9, 2008.
 Walter Benjamin, “Paris, the Capital of the Nineteenth Century,” in Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, eds. Howard Eiland and Michael W. Jennings, trans. Edmund Jephcott, Howard Eiland and others, Vol. 3 (Cambridge, Mass. and London: Belkamp Press, 2002), 33.
 Ibid., 39, 41-42.
 Sue Williamson, “Daniel Halter,” (2010). Accessed July 22, 2011, www.artthrob.co.za/07jul/artbio.html
 Jonathan Owen, “Street Prices of Cannabis, Ecstasy and Cocaine at an all Time Low,” The Independent, September 6, 2006.
The match stick, the suitcase and the weaver: nervous conditions in Dan Halter’s The Truth Lies Here
The status of ‘native’ is a nervous condition introduced and maintained by the settler among colonized people with their consent. Laying claim to and denying the human condition at the same time: the contradiction is explosive. For that matter it does explode, you know as well as I do; and we are living at the moment when the match is put to the fuse.
fab ri cate (verb)
- to make, build, or construct
- to devise, invent or concoct (a story, lie etc)
- to fake or forge
(The Free Dictionary)
The manner in which a structure is built determines its fate. Weak materials, shallow foundations, and shoddy workmanship place stress on it. To the naked eye the danger is often hidden; we cannot see the slowly rotting joist that will one day cause the ceiling to cave in, the shuddering bolt that will make the bridge collapse or the live wire that will spark the fire. Look closely though, and we might notice a few hairline cracks; the bubbling paintwork that belies rot, or the flakes of orange rust collecting beneath the support.
Sartre’s treatise on the status of the ‘native’, quoted above, was written in 1961 as a preface to Fanon’s seminal treatise on decolonisation, The Wretched of the Earth. Written during the decolonisation of Algeria, Fanon’s text tackles all manner of issues; from the role of intellectuals in the revolution, to the manner in which colonial language subjugates the subject.
Zimbabwean author, Tsitsi Dangarembga, reused Sartre’s phrase in the title of her novel, Nervous Conditions (1989). Set in colonial era Zimbabwe, the book displays the psychological maladies exhibited by the young black protagonist, Tambudzai, and those around her, when they come into contact with the coloniser. Ranging from alienation to full-blown anorexia, these invisible conditions build up and feed on that which is internalised; the rage that does not find expression.
Born in Zimbabwe, and currently residing in Cape Town, Dan Halter’s work refers not to a colonial context, but to a dictatorship. On one level, his works are fairly divergent, exploring a web of issues surrounding the post-colonial drama as it has played out in Zimbabwe over the past decade. His modes of fabrication, for instance, diverge greatly. In The Truth Lies Here, works are either fabricated from match sticks, woven mesh bags or woven from excerpts of literary text. On another level though, there’s a seam – or crack, rather – which runs through all of Halter’s work: a nervous energy which leads us back to time when the walls cannot hold; the lie unravels, and the structure topples. It is here that we begin to spot the nervous conditions of a different sector of the world’s population: those living under a dictatorship, or attempting to escape it as a refugee.
‘text’ (n)… from pp. stem of texere “to weave,”
(Online Etymology Dictionary)
Weaving is not new to Halter’s practice. In the past, he has generally woven together two contradictory pieces of printed material; text from Orwell’s Animal Farm with maps of Zimbabwe (I don’t know what to believe anymore (2005)) or shredded Zimbabwean currency with a maps of farms (Never say never (2006)). The act of weaving in these works then, is about joining; knitting things together as if to force a confrontation
In this exhibition though, it is the same pieces of text which are sliced up, and meticulously rewoven back into themselves. It’s an odd tautology, in a sense; a long process to go through, one might think, just to keep the text the same.
In Samizdat (2011), it is a portion of Orwell’s 1984 that receives the reweaving treatment. Recreating a page from the fictional book within the book, The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism by Emmanuel Goldstein, Halter slices up the text and then reweaves it back into itself. By and large, the text is still visible, and the fake manifesto, still legible:
Past events, it is argued, have no objective existence… The past is whatever the records and the memories agree upon. And since the Party is in full control of all records and in equally full control of the minds of its members, the past is whatever the Party chooses to make it.
The words, however, bend and curve with the warp and the weft of the weaving. The mode of fabrication draws attention to another kind of fabrication: that of writing a text. The magician’s trick revealed, the magic dissipates, and the crowd have no reason to follow the leader any longer.
Similarly, in Stru’s Bob! (2012), three A2 pages of text from George Orwell’s Animal Farm are rewoven in a triptych. In the act of weaving a certain amount of slippage also takes place. “Bbtlefef ttl ccwswsedd” reads one phrase, the words literally falling through the cracks. The paper too, is placed under stress, pulled taut to keep the meaning, it buckles under the strain. It begins to resemble something worn, a used piece of cloth, a little like a woven mesh bag.
Speaking of the work, Halter recalls how, in 2000, just as the farm grabbing began in Zimbabwe, one brave newspaper reprinted Animal Farm in its entirety. A brave, subversive deed, Halter’s Stru’s Bob! commemorates this act, whilst simultaneously calling attention to the erosion of truth and transparency in Zimbabwe’s media over the past 12 years.
At a glance, two things signal the refugee: his accent, and his suitcase. Plastic mesh bags, of the variety used by immigrants all over the world, have become a recurring signifier in Halter’s works. Early on, they appear emblazoned with an alien motif from Space Invaders, or arranged to form a literal barrier, visible from the air.
Mass produced in China, the bags have become synonymous with refugees, often named for the immigrants in each country. In Ghana and West Africa, Halter notes, they are known as ‘Ghana must go’ bags, after a period of forced expulsions which the countries engaged in.
Halter’s Ghana Must Go Quilt (2011) uses these bags as a means to find solidarity with other persecuted groups in history. A recreation of the tumbling block pattern, used in quilts prior to the end of slavery in the USA, the work refers to a theory held by some historians that slaves during this period employed coded quilts hung over fences to communicate (City of Owen Sound 2004). This particular pattern is thought to be a covert warning to those escaping that the area is not safe; a conductor is in the area. Constructed out of the woven mesh bags most commonly used by refugees, it reads differently. It is a warning to illegal aliens, of dangers from the authorities? A warning of the threats of xenophobic violence? Or an indictment of the host country who exert a pressure akin to slavery on their guests?
In a second gargantuan quilt, it is the map of the world which is constructed from these bags. Rifugiato Mappa Del Mondo (2011) references Alighiero Boetti’s Mappa del Mondo in which each country is embroidered with its flag. In Halter’s quilt, the entire world is made up of new and used bags, as if the world were an endless sea of travellers, perhaps, united under one flag.
In places, the mesh bags are still new; North America is a shiny expanse of fresh bags, while Africa and South America are worn raw. Elsewhere, the fibres have stretched beyond breaking point, and holes are appearing. In one place, big looping black stitches have been used to repair the bags, in another a thick stretch of black rubber winds itself between the borders, securing the topography. Roughly conforming to an infographic of immigration and emigration statistics, the quilt reveals the weak spots where the world is under strain; where the fabric of society is stretched taut, and made to bear too much weight.
In Things Fall Apart I and II, this threat of breakage is articulated. A reference to Chinua Achebe’s seminal novel of the same name, the plastic mesh bags both exhibit holes. For the main character in Achebe’s art, the story ends in disaster, with Okwonkwo taking his own life after finding himself incapable of tolerating the indignity of colonisation any longer. The ultimate expression of a “nervous condition”, Achebe’s story suggests how continued stress can lead to self-destruction (Satre 1961).
A third bag meanwhile, is embroidered with the phrase ‘When the bag breaks, the shoulders get a rest’. A seemingly pragmatic saying, it also highlights the weight these cheap, flimsy bags carry, the tension their carrier is under, and the proximity of disaster.
Halter’s works with match sticks are perhaps the most tension-filled of all of his works; the most confrontational expression of the building tension. As Sartre put it, “We are living at the moment when the match is put to the fuse,” (1961).
Halter first used matches in the work Font for a revolution (2006), the matches glued together to read the ‘The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.’ Using both the matchboxes, and the matches, the work was a veritable kit for starting a fire. It seemed to call for revolution, as if hailing the cleansing power of violence elucidated in Franz Fanon’s anti-colonial writings.
In this exhibition, the match stick works are used in a contradictory sense. “Patience is Zimbabwean” declare a row of matchsticks in Struze fact (2012).
Rendered 3D by a trick of their positioning, the letters seem to tilt ever so slightly, as if at any moment, they might topple and meet with the side of the matchbox, causing a fire.
Like the Brit’s fabled stiff upper lip, or the brashness of Americans, the phrase uses cultural pressure to enforce obedience and conformity. This patience though, surely cannot last forever. The repressed rage will seep out somehow; particularly given the vast injustices which Zimbabweans daily face.
The phrase also brings a childish chant to mind: “Patience is a virtue, virtue is a grace, Grace is a little girl who wouldn’t wash her face”. Nonsense it may be, but appropriately, Grace also happens to be the first name of Robert Mugabe’s wife. Known as ‘dis-Grace’ by some Zimbabweans, her lavish lifestyle represents one of many bitter pills Zimbabweans – some of whom do not even have access to safe drinking water – must swallow.
A third reading results from the fact that Patience is a common Zimbabwean name. As such, the work becomes a statement of nationality; the marking of an outsider, or, in a context of xenophobic violence, an accusation.
In Necklace (2012), a tyre, emblazoned with the words ‘Go Home or Die Here’ in matchsticks, refers to a second verbal threat used during the 2008 outbreaks of xenophobic violence. A veritable kit to commit a necklacing, the match stick here captures another sign of cracks forming; the vertical violence and oppression which has so patiently been endured by South Africa’s post colonial subjects, converted into horizontal violence.
In the 2008 attacks, Halter remarks on the fact that the aggressors used language to discern who was a foreigner; their shibboleth a Zulu word for elbow – which ironically led to several South Africans dying as they did not speak Zulu.
In an interview, activist Joachim Gauck discusses the psychological effects of living in exile. The refugee must constantly observe themselves and their surroundings. “You are immediately recognisable because you talk differently… don’t let yourself be too easily recognisable, it could be dangerous” (2010).
In the third matchstick work rainbow-coloured matches spell out ‘amakwerekwere’. A childish, teasing name, it is meant to ridicule the way in which foreigners sound when they speak, but it is easily co-opted into tinder to spark a fire, burning the ideal of a rainbow nation as it burns. Titled Indlala inamanyala (2012), meaning “don’t blame us blame our stomachs” it alludes again to the conversion of vertical oppression to horizontal oppression. Unable to free themselves from poverty, or the legacy of the apartheid oppressor, the aggressors take it out on those around them.
Everywhere in Halter’s work then, there are signs that something is amiss in the fabrication. Try as we might to conceal the tensions; cracks are forming, the slick covering inevitably peeling away to reveal the rot within.
Be it in buckling woven texts, ripping bags or inflammatory words, Halter’s fabrications vibrate with this tension. For now, the frustration is held patiently in the rewoven texts, the quilted bags. They beg several questions: how long will it be before the match is struck? And when it comes, will the fire be a cleansing one, or will it merely destroy those whose load is already too heavy to bear?
See the exhibition mentioned in this article.
City of Owen Sound. (2004). Quilt Codes. [online] Available: http://www.osblackhistory.com/quiltcodes.php (13 March 2012)
Dangarembgba, T. 1988. Nervous Conditions. Seal Press: New York
Gauck, J. 2010. Right life in the wrong life: Joachim Gauck talks about Ossis and Wessis, opposition, conformism, and the long-term psychological effects of a dictatorial regime. An interview with Joachim Güntner. [online] Available: http://www.signandsight.com/features/2039.html (14 March 2012)
Homer; Monro, Homer; Monro, D. B. (David Binning). (1890) The Iliad. [online] Available: http://www.archive.org/details/homeriliadbooks00monrgoog (13 March 2012)
Sartre, J, P. (1961). Preface to Frantz Fanon’s “Wretched of the Earth”, [online], Available at: http://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/sartre/1961/preface.htmz [13 March 2012]
Extract from ‘Culture Games’
Kathryn Smith 2006
Take Me To Your Leader includes a technically diverse range of works encompassing video, sculpture, weaving, collage and assemblage. The exhibition has its origins in post-conceptualism, literary cut-ups and games of culture and currency, and the histories of colonial occupation and revolution in Africa.
Untitled (Zimbabwean Rave Queen) provides a strong orientation from which to access this collection of works. The opening refrains of “Everybody’s Free (to feel good)”, that anthem of early 90’s dance music, are unmistakable. The driving beat and club diva Rozalla’s assurance that “brother and sister, together we’ll make it through” are insistently upbeat, yet somewhat at odds with the accompanying visuals. White kids, the protagonists of 90’s rave culture, dance on flatbed trucks and in open spaces, worshipping the gods of deep bass emanating from giant speaker stacks.
Cut to images of mass protest and uprising, multitudes of people toyi-toying in the streets. The juxtaposition immediately unsettles. It feels dangerous. You ask yourself, “Is this okay? Can you play this sort of sampling game when the import of what each particular scenario represents seems so fundamentally out of synch with each other?” But such is the strategy behind montage’s production of a ‘third’ sense engendered by radical combination.
The heaving bodies pound the ground and raise their arms with similar resolve. Stripped of their ideological disparities, both scenarios speak of desire for an alternative reality. Both harness the psychology of crowds to shift individual sensibilities to mass consciousness. The song’s chorus seems to suggest a political imperative camouflaged in an otherwise bubblegum-dance track.
Like the rave-culture origins of this video piece, the sculptural work Stone Tablets, Bitter Pills sees Halter using traditional Zimbabwean soapstone from various areas within the country to hand carve a set of tablets bearing pop culture icons that make explicit reference to Ecstasy, while their scale reflects that of small landmines. The idea of “a new set of commandments and some bitter truths” also provides the impetus for I don’t know what to believe anymore and Life goes on.
Halter has paired two maps of Zimbabwe, one of farming regions and the other of land classification, with two key literary works of the 20th century, George Orwell’s Animal Farm and Joseph Conrad’s The Heart of Darkness, respectively. The novels are shredded and woven into the respective maps to reveal aphorisms and platitudes (“when days are dark friends are few”) where areas are left unwoven or stitched over.
Halter’s work is characterised by a conceptualism that employs play as a principle device, most literally embodied in a modified game of pool installed in the gallery which capitalises on a perverse ‘foreign exchange’, namely the interchangeability of a Zim 20c piece and South African R2 coin (the standard price for a game on a pay-per-play pool table). The game is cheap and the stakes are high: only two balls are left. Sink white, your opponent gets two shots. Sink black, you win, game over.
Halter’s engagement with play and dark sense of humour is not to make light of complex issues, but rather functions like satire in that it provides a point of access to a truth or reality that is otherwise unspeakable. He asks: “How do you start or suppress a revolution?” With a nod to Kendell Geers’ Terrorist’s Apprentice sculpture (a matchstick cast in gold), Halter has developed font for a revolution/Zimbabwe, two typefaces produced from matchsticks and matchboxes. Using the industry standard sentence used to demonstrate the ‘look and feel’ of a typeface – “the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog” – the result is deliberately inflammatory.
Halter states: “I think art does create a consciousness that can cause social/political change. I think art should attack the status quo in as many different ways as possible. I think it should manifest itself wherever possible, on the streets and in buildings. I think this particular body of work was made for a gallery audience – to jolt the intellectuals out of their complacency and to start looking at the future of South Africa with an awareness of what is going on in Zimbabwe and the rest of Africa. In many ways South Africa has to catch up. The wealth distribution here must change; and to ignore Zimbabwe as a model close to home where this is happening is naïve.”
See the exhibition mentioned in this article.