William Kentridge: Tide table

29 August – 17 October 2008

William Kentridge is one of the most significant and internationally renowned artists of our time. Kentridge was born in Johannesburg in 1955 and continues to live and work in South Africa. His unique artistic practice offers a distinctive vision of the complex history of South Africa, the legacy of apartheid and, more broadly, the nature of human emotions and memory.

Tide table 2003 is one of Kentridge's iconic animations and exemplifies his technique of making charcoal drawings on a single page that are successively amended and filmed. Through animation Kentridge portrays the realities of daily life alongside the broader moral and ethical issues faced by the developing nation of South Africa as well as communities the world over.

Multiple narratives intersect in Tide Table as Kentridge continues his imaginary saga of a ruthless Johannesburg industrialist, Soho Eckstein, and his alter ego-sensitive poet and artist, Felix Teitlebaum. From his beachside hotel room Soho Eckstein (and Felix Teitlebaum)watch several events unfold from the beach itself. Military generals ominously populate the balconies of the hotel, while beach chairs take on human characteristics. In Tide Table, the beach is a site of death and desperation, but also a place for play, passion and spiritual regeneration.

Media release (PDF file, 259kb) (opens in a new window)