This Masters in Fine Art research project is an exploration into the anxieties of the white South African suburban landscape through photomontage and painting.

My experience of growing up in the affluent suburbs outside Cape Town informs my practice. Standard middle-class conceptions of leisure and the comfort/refuge of domestic spaces in suburbia are often isolated from the complexities of the South African socio-political context. The work in Leisure Island hopes to highlight this disjunction.

South African home décor magazines, such as Garden & Home, provide the imagery of an ideal suburbia. Photomontages created from these sources enable me to manipulate, tear, cut and disrupt the certitude of these stereotypical representations. Painting over, into and from these images then provides a place for a further unsettling of assurance. Imaginatively, these disruptions allude to some of the social and political narratives that are repressed in the original images through power hegemonies such as white privilege.




© Kirsten Lilford 2018

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