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3rd Text Africa (formerly Third Text Africa) is an open access, peer-reviewed journal that publishes contemporary perspectives on visual arts and culture, with a particular interest in facilitating and stimulating critical scholarship on and from the African continent. Third Text Africa was initiated by Rasheed Araeen, founding editor of Third Text, in partnership with ASAI. 3rd Text Africa has its own editorial structure and operates independently of the print journal.
Founding Editor: Rasheed Araeen, founder editor of Third Text, London.
Nirveda Alleck, Mahatma Gandhi Institute, University of Mauritius
Alda Costa, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Maputo
Christine Eyene, Liverpool John Moore's University, UK
Nomusa Makhubu, University of Cape Town & ASAI
Mario Pissarra, ASAI
Lize van Robbroeck, University of Stellenbosch & ASAI
Awam Amkpa, New York University, USA
Raphael Chikukwa, National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Harare
Roberto Conduru, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, USA
Angelo Kakande, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
Namuburu Rose Kirumira, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
Abdellah Karroum, L’Appartement 22, Rabat, Morocco
Yacouba Konate, University of Abidjan, Ivory Coast
Kwame Labi, University of Ghana, Accra
Neo Matome, University of Botswana, Gaborone
Nicholas Mirzoeff, New York University, USA
Anitra Nettleton, Wits University, South Africa
William Bwalya Miko, independent, Lusaka
Barbara Murray, independent, London
Jacqueline Nolte, University of the Fraser Valley, Vancouver
CALL FOR PAPERS :
We are currently preparing the next edition, 'Walls', guest edited by Thulile Gamedze. The CFP for next edition will be issued in July 2023.
Guidelines for submissions
Texts can be in the form of essays, interviews or reviews. Visual essays are also welcome.
Texts should not exceed 7,000 words, including notes.
Portuguese and English texts are welcome.
Contributors should comply with ASAI’s style sheet (available on request)
Mario Pissarra firstname.lastname@example.org
Is 3rd Text Africa a project of a University? No, Third Text Africa is produced by ASAI, an independent research platform based at the University of Cape Town, but is not funded by UCT.
Is 3rd Text Africa accredited by the Department of National Education, RSA? No. This is not a platform designed for (South African) academics to earn subsidies for their institutions.
Will 3rd Text Africa be offering a print version in the future? The emphasis is on publishing online, as this reaches a broader audience. Print versions would only be considered if funding is available for this purpose.
If 3rd Text Africa is an online journal, what format will it adopt to be viewed? Articles can be downloaded independently as pdfs.
Can I publish my article in other journals or does 3rd Text Africa demand exclusivity? 3rd Text Africa gives preference to original articles, but will consider previously published articles if it adds value to a particular issue. Articles first published online with 3rd Text Africa can be published elsewhere, provided that prior publication in Third Text Africa is acknowledged.
When do I hear from you? You will receive an acknowledgment of receipt within one week of sending your article. We aim to inform you of the outcome within six weeks of the deadline for the relevant issue.
Do all articles submitted get peer reviews? Only articles considered by the editors to be suitable candidates for publication proceed to peer review. Articles considered unsuitable by the editors will not be sent to reviewers.
How does peer review work? Editors make an initial assessment of all articles and identify reviewers. Reviewers submit written reports to editors. These reports either recommend publication as is, publication subject to particular changes, or that articles should be declined. Editors consider reviewers reports before communicating to writers. The identity of writers is not disclosed to reviewers and vice versa.
What kind of people are asked to do peer review? A wide network of reviewers is used, including but not limited to the members of the editorial board and advisory council. Reviewers are typically professionals in high standing. These include academics, curators, educators and other art professionals. Postgraduate students with developed professional reputations are also invited.
Are contributors paid? Under normal circumstances writers, as well as reviewers, editorial board members and advisory council members are not paid for their contributions. The editor and/or managing editor are employed by ASAI.
What does the editorial board do? The editorial board acts as sounding board for the editors, and recommends themes and policy. Editorial members also contribute to peer review.
What does the advisory council do? The advisory council acts as a broad consultative and support network for the editors. Members also assist with peer review.
What kinds of papers are typically accepted? Papers that challenge orthodoxies and provide fresh perspectives. Papers that engage with the interface between art and broader social issues are particularly welcome.
What are the length limitations on papers Third Text Africa accepts? 3rd Text Africa strongly prefers articles of 5000-7000 words in length including text and footnotes, however we will except texts with less or more words. The strength of the content is privileged over word count
This third edition of Third Text Africa comprises selected articles on South African themes published in Third Text between 1991 and 2000. Each comprises a survey of sorts – whether a critical account of South African art practice or a review of an exhibition that was panoramic in scope. Since Third Text only covered a small fraction of such material generated during this period, this edition could be seen to be a random sample of a random sample.
However, in other respects this random sample is revealing. Firstly, it indirectly affirms that most surveys take the form of exhibitions. Secondly, it reminds us that most curated surveys are produced for an international audience, more specifically in the USA and a handful of European centres. Thirdly, the fact that Third Text has published more articles on South African topics than on other African or Third World countries highlights the relative dominance of South African art. Are these observations simply the way it is, or cause for concern?
The need to move beyond survey exhibitions has been argued by, among others, Sylvester Ogbechie. Ogbechie has consistently argued that without detailed studies of individual artists African artists will not gain their deserved place within international art. Here again one can observe that South Africans dominate other African countries both in the number of international solo exhibitions held and the number of texts on individual artists. Notably most of these individual studies comprise catalogues , thereby affirming the quantitative dominance of exhibitions in developing intellectual capital.
With interest in South African survey exhibitions being sustained a lot longer than may have been expected, one has to ask why it is that there is apparently less international interest in survey exhibitions of other African countries? Is South African art really more interesting? Why is the art world interested in exhibitions centred on identity in South African art but seemingly less interested in what, for example, Nigeria or Egypt have to say about the subject? Does South Africa really have more or better artists than other African countries? Is it that South Africa has a more developed infrastructure for art? What does history, politics, and resources have to do with the relative prominence of South African art compared to, for example, the relative invisibility of artists in the Southern African Development Community? Does race have anything to do with it?
The irony is that it is critical surveys, both national and transnational, that can assist in answering some of these questions. Yet, it must be said, this will require a paradigm shift. Commercial interests, particularly those of publishers, galleries and artists, determine that many of our exhibitions and publications are little more than glorified marketing. Colin Richards’ essay, which may have been the first to identify identity as a key theme in South African art, was motivated by a genuine desire to make critical sense of practice within the transition from apartheid to democracy. Can the same be said of most writing on South African art?
Editor, Third Text Africa
Colin Richards’ “About Face: Aspects of Art, History and Identity in South African Visual Culture “ was published in Third Text, no.s 16/17, 1991, pp. 101-133.
Gabriel Perez-Barreiro’s “Earth and Everything: Recent Art from South Africa” was published in Third Text, 1997, no. 38, pp. 92-94.
Jacqueline Nolte’s “Contemporary South African Art 1985–1995” was published in Third Text, no. 39, 1997, pp. 95-103.
Biko Agozino’s “The Globalisation of Apartheid: Representing Power” was published in Third Text, no. 42, 1998, pp. 95-99.
Mario Pissarra’s “Cross Currents: Contemporary Art Practice in South Africa” was published in Third Text, no. 52, 2000, pp. 95-102.
All previously published texts appear in Third Text Africa with permission of Third Text and Routledge. Copyright resides with Third Text/ Authors. No article may be reproduced without the written permission of the Editor, Third Text.
Published by WITS University Press in 1996
b. 1968, Johannesburg, South Africa; lives in Cape Town.
Printmaker, painter and musician, Sophie Peters’ images reflect her personal history, her spiritual connections, and her relationship to the places and times in which she grew up, and continues to live.
Sophie Die Heldersiende KunstenaarDalena Van Jaarveld Kuier. 25 November 2009
Beyond Borders. Voyage Ensemble Sipho Velaphi & Linda Nkosi Ngwenya. Rootz. 2007
A cry from the heart: Sophie Peters
Her days are numbered Sanlam Exhibition
Black Artists Exhibit:Truth,reconciliation in art Lloyd Pollak. Cape Times. 29 September 1999
Breek of baas Marie Claire. June 1997
Resolute Sophie Fulfills her dream The Argus. 14 June 1995
Life’s experiences as art Gareth Van Blerk. June 1995
Life and art: Sophie’s choice Shannon Neill. South Side 9. April 1994
Sophie Skets’wat sy voel’ Shireen Adams. Metro- Burger. Dongerdag. 25 November 1993
Sophie Peters. Group Show
“Voyage Ensemble, A Journey Together” , Scalabrini Centre, Cape Town 2007. Exhibition booklet.“Voyage Ensemble, A Journey Together” , Scalabrini Centre, Cape Town 2007. Exhibition booklet. Sophie
“voyage ensemble, a journey together” , scalabrini centre, cape town 2006“Voyage Ensemble, A Journey Together” , Scalabrini Centre, Cape Town 2006 - Sophie
This essay featured in the catalogue for Botaki Exhibition 3: Conversations with Sophie Peters, an exhibition curated by Mario Pissarra for Old Mutual Asset Managers, Cape Town , 2005
Sophie Peters also has work in private collections in South Africa, Europe, the United States of America and Australia.
b. 1968, Machibini, Eastern Cape, South Africa; lives in Khayelitsha.
Thami Kiti moved to the informal settlement of Crossroads in the early 1980s, and presently lives in Khayelitsha. Kiti learned to carve at the Community Arts Project. His skilful carvings draw on his rural upbringing and Xhosa identity, and express deep respect for the natural environment and the medium of wood itself.
From the Against the Grain catalogue:
"Thami Kiti's works draw directly on his Xhosa culture, in particular, [the] frequently revisited theme of sacrifice that is associated with most significant ceremonies that mark rites of passage, such as initiation, birth, marriage and death. His strong interest in three-dimensional form and narrative is best seen in references to the [hybrid] female forms that he calls "goat women"... Kiti's "goat women" capture a transformative, liminal moment [that] is accentuated through the representation of movement...The [inclusion] of hybrid figures in Cries of Crossroads introduces the use of animal as metaphor for the human condition, whereas the dramatic interplay between goat and woman in several works [symbolizes] the interdependence between human and animal beings. In Kiti's animal sculptures this inter-relationship is more ambiguously handled..."
- Mario Pissarra.
2008 - 2011: Assistant puppet maker, Handspring Puppet Company.
1996: Thapong International Artists Workshop, Gaborone, Botswana.