KAKISTOCRACY - A RESPONSE TO OUR DUEL POLITICAL REALITIES (2017)
Type of book work: Variable Edition of 7 (various pamphlet stitch bindings)
Media: Drypoint and monoprint on Dobbin Mill Papers (with embedded detritus)
Artist's / designer's statements
Kakistocracy is a term that has been used to describe a state or country run by the worst, least qualified, or most unscrupulous citizens. It combines qualities of "nepotism, oligarchy, plutocracy, kleptocracy, demagoguery, alt-right values and a disturbing tendency toward fascist nationalism".
As artists from two nations both presenting as kleptocracies, we combined our perspectives and artistic styles to create this artist's book by re-interpreting our landscapes as dumping grounds, and printing them on papers filled with detritus and worn with holes.
The double pamphlet French-door structure allows for a myriad of presentations and enhances the non-linear exploration of these ideas.
Artist / Academic / Community Engagement Activist
Berman is an Associate Professor in Visual Art at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) and Executive Director of Artist Proof Studio (APS), a community-based printmaking centre in Newtown, Johannesburg which she co-founded APS with the late Nhlanhla Xaba in 1991. She received her B.A.F.A. from the University of the Witwatersrand in 1981 and her M.F.A. from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts/ Tufts University, USA in 1989. She completed her PhD at the University of the Witwatersrand in 2009.
She has lectured and exhibited widely in South Africa and internationally. She is committed to engaging arts for social change through her activism and teaching. Her forthcoming book: Finding Voice: A visual approach to engaging change, published by the University of Michigan Press will be released later this year.