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William Kentridge and Jo Smail
LOT ID: 79688
Collaboration, #11, 2005

Mixed Media, on Paper
22 х 15 in. (55.88 x 38.1 cm.)
Signed, titled, and dated by the artists, lower right
Lot description
Artwork measures 22 x 15 inches (55.9 x 38.1 cm).

This delicate work on paper belongs to a series of collaborations between South African artists William Kentridge and Jo Smail. Executed between 2002 and 2005-- and after a stroke in 2000 impaired Smail's ability to speak-- the Kentridge/Smail collaborations emerged through ongoing postal correspondence between the two artists, in which one artist would begin a piece and mail it to the other to transform. The present work is one of the later installations in the two artists' visual dialogue on paper.

William Kentridge (b. 1955) is a contemporary South African draughtsman, filmmaker, printmaker, theater artist, and sculptor. Born in Johannesburg, he is the son of Sydney Kentridge, one of South Africa's leading anti-apartheid lawyers. After studying politics and African history at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg (1973-1976), Kentridge studied Fine Art at the Johannesburg Art Foundation (1976–1978) and the École Jacques Lecoq in Paris. His interest in theater—specifically in acting and design—influenced his artistic style and inspired a desire to connect film and drawing. Kentridge's drawings, often executed in pastel or charcoal, are often created as studies for animated films. His work has been inspired by artistic satirists such as Honoré Daumier (French, 1808–1879), Francisco de Goya (Spanish, 1746-1828), and William Hogarth (British, 1697-1764). Kentridge has had solo exhibitions the Museum of Modern Art in New York (2010), the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (2009), and the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2004), among many others. He has been a recipient of the Kaiserring Prize (2003), the Carnegie Prize (2000), and an honorary doctorate from Rhodes University; he has also been nominated for the Hugo Boss Prize (1998). He lives and works in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Selected Public Collections:
Art Institute of Chicago, IL
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY
Tate Modern, London, England
Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN

Jo Smail is a contemporary South African artist whose abstract and semi-abstract paintings often incorporate mixed media and collage, yielding bright, flattened compositions with subtle textural variegation. She has had solo exhibitions at Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa (1981, 1984); Ombondi Gallery, New York, NY (1989, 1990); 55 Mercer Street, New York, NY (1990); Goya Girl Contemporary Art Gallery, Baltimore, MD (2002, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2011-12); and Axis Gallery, New York, NY (2006). Her work is held in the permanent collections of the Johannesburg Art Museum, South Africa; the Pretoria Art Museum, South Africa; and the National Gallery of South Africa in Capetown, among others. Smail has been a recipient of two Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grants (1996, 1997). She lives and works in Baltimore, MD.
Collaboration, #11 by William Kentridge and Jo Smail
  • Collaboration, #11 by William Kentridge and Jo Smail
  • Collaboration, #11 by William Kentridge and Jo Smail
  • Collaboration, #11 by William Kentridge and Jo Smail
  • Collaboration, #11 by William Kentridge and Jo Smail
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