The Temptation to Exist

Conrad Botes

The Temptation to Exist

Conrad Botes' third solo show at the gallery makes reference to Romanian philosopher EM Cioran's collection of essays of the same name, the title suggesting the possibility of a life unbounded by the constraints of Calvinistic values, and paradoxically also questioning our very desire to exist in the world as we know it. At the heart of the body of work is a series of self-portraits, in which Botes overlays the image of his face with his characteristic scrawl of anarchic figures which he describes as representations of the ideology and hatred that contaminate the human condition. In an accompanying essay, Chad Rossouw argues that, rather than sinking into a depression, 'Botes' work finds redemption in action, and specifically in art-making. Through self-awareness and expression, cynicism can turn from its futile nature into an act of criticism. Indifference is replaced by vitality.'

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Published by Stevenson | Catalogue 58, September 2011
Softcover, 36 pages | Price: R100