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Kendell Geers | ‘In Gozi We Trust’

On 23 November Goodman Gallery Johannesburg opens In Gozi We Trust, Kendell Geers’ sixth solo exhibition with the gallery in his hometown of Johannesburg. The exhibition follows critically successful solo presentations of Geers’ work in Amsterdam, Dublin, Barcelona and Budapest.

The title might translate as “In DANGER We Trust” or be read as “In Jozi We Trust”, a subtle reference to William Kentridge’s animation Johannesburg, 2nd Greatest City After Paris (1989). This play on words is typical of Geers’ trickster sensibilities and references the Nguni words for danger (ingozi) and God (nkosi) via the slogan ‘In God We Trust’. The works in the exhibition examine the role that threat and danger play in the construction of Johannesburg’s identity and the consoling habit of finding comfort through the beauty of art.

In Gozi We Trust is a resurrection of spirit through an invocation of nature,” Geers explains. “Pierneef painted the landscape without people because he was a prisoner of his perception. This exhibition is a return to the traditions of Still Life and Landscape painting in which conceptual language is flipped on its head with a conceptual-expressionist twist.”

The exhibition opens on Saturday 23 November at 18H00 and will be accompanied by a conversation between Geers and art critic Athi Mongezeleli Joja.