Neo Mahlangu

Visual artist | South Africa

Neo Mahlangu (1992) is a young, self-taught emerging artist, based in Johannesburg, South Africa. Following her passion for design and art, she made the switch from the Healthcare industry in 2017 to pursue a career as a digital illustrator and fine artist with her debut as a finalist for the Cassirer Welz Award.

“I would rather capture women as divine or mythical sirens, feeling, living, warning and residing in their soft power without the influence of men and being outdone by the whims of men.”

Artworks

Portrait

Neo Mahlangu (1992) is a young, self-taught emerging artist, based in Johannesburg, South Africa. Following her passion for design and art, she made the switch from the Healthcare industry in 2017 to pursue a career as a digital illustrator and fine artist with her debut as a finalist for the Cassirer Welz Award.

Since debuting her artworks at an August House Open Studio (Johannesburg, 2017), Mahlangu has shown regularly at galleries domestically and beyond, in Italy, Spain and the Netherlands. In 2019, she made her art fair debut at the Latitudes Art Fair (Johannesburg). More recently, she has been nominated for several awards, amongst others by the Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) for the ImpACT Awards for Young Professionals (2020). Her works have been included in the University of Johannesburg and MMArthouse collections.

In her work, she comments on womanhood as defined by the cultural, racial and political context of South African daily reality. In her charcoal with acrylic works, she shows sober, powerful female heads in a sleek white surface with an almost mythical appearance.

She writes, “I would rather capture women as divine or mythical sirens, feeling, living, warning and residing in their soft power without the influence of men and being outdone by the whims of men. It is self-asserting project so as to not experience life in a reduction – one informed by patriarchal impositions where men subsume the voices and ideas of women within a critical rubric that reinforces male supremacy.”

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Credentials

Exhibitions

2021

Barcelona Contemporary Art Fair, Barcelona, Spain

Identify With Me, Latitudes Art Fair, Johannesburg

Undertow, OpenArtExchange, Schiedam, The Netherlands

2020

Venice International Art Fair, Venice, Italy

Ambiguous Group Exhibition, MMArtHouse, Johannesburg

2019

South African Mint #SA25, Latitudes Art Fair, Johannesburg

Voices and Choices, Constitution Hill, Johannesburg

FirstRand group exhibition, MMArtHouse, Johannesburg

Top 10 Young Gauteng’s Exhibition 100% Design South Africa, Johannesburg

MID group exhibition, AGOG Gallery, Johannesburg

Bibliotheca, Bag Factory Artist Studios, Johannesburg

2018

Continuing Conversations, University of Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg

Winter Group Exhibition, Julie Miller Art Gallery, Johannesburg

Creative Portraits group exhibition, 100% Design South Africa

Bogaleng Exhibition, Braamfontein, Johannesburg

Group Exhibition, Design Indaba Emerging Creatives, Cape Town

Talking to Deaf Ears group Exhibition, ABSA Gallery, Johannesburg (c)

Group Exhibition, Absolut One Source Festival of Creativity, Johannesburg

2017

Untitled Group Exhibition, St. Laurient Art Gallery, Brooklyn, Pretoria

Ringa! Afropunk x Umuzi Group Exhibition, Johannesburg and Cape Town

Art Alive Exhibition, Waterkloof High School, Pretoria

Collections

  • University of Johannesburg Collection
  • MMArthouse Collection

 

Education

  • Printmaking Training Programme – Artist Proof Studio
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Advertising – UMUZI
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Sales – CHIETA
  • BSc Medical Sciences – University of Pretoria
 

Awards

2020
Top 200 Young South Africans, Mail & Guardian Newspaper
 
Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) for the ImpACT Awards for Young Professionals Nominee
2019
Designing two R2 coins to commemorate 25 years of South Africa’s democracy, South African Mint
2018
Design Indaba Emerging Creative, Design Indaba
 
Top 10 Young Gauteng creatives, 100%Design South Africa
 
Top 40 Creatives under 30, Between 10and5
 
Top 10 finalist for Univ. of Johannesburg Emerging Artist Development Program, University of Johannesburg and the MTN Foundation
2017
Cassirer Welz Award Finalist, Bag Factory and Strauss&Co