Thursday, 26 April 2012

Urban Arts Platform, Johannesburg.

The Urban Arts platform is a multidisciplinary arts organization based at the art deco Ansteys Building on Joubert and Jeppe Street in Johannesburg CBD. For many of the young residents of this building, play is often restricted to the building itself so UAP was set up to cater for them to engage in a wide variety of artistic projects.
During my recent visit to the city I was invited by Leigh Nudelman of UAP to take part in a one day arts workshop with the young residents of the building. The brief was pretty simple. We have one day, possibly stretching into two to transform their art room wall into something more colourful.
To do this we would need to pull out all the stops and paint in a frantic pace to achieve our goal in the short amount of time we had. Hand prints, paint splats, drippy paint techniques and some drawing references were all used to make the wall happen.
The theme was ' Love Joburg' and featured a leopard fish ( we made that up) swimming with a big rope chain and a big snake with its body spelling out the word.
The task was completed in about 5 hours with some finishing being done on the Sunday.
The Urban Arts Platform is a great project that engages the young people and I hope to work with them in the future again.
For more information on the Ansteys kids projects or if you could help go here :  or email
Many thanks to the residents at the Ansteys building, Leigh Nudelman, Juliet,Gina Cooperman and Nkosinathi Zulu at the British Council for the support.
 We are here in full art deco

 This looks a good place to paint.
 Getting stuck in with the base coat.
 Everybody to the wall .
 Protective clothing is needed at all times
 Head of design has an idea
 Muffins ordered now down to business.
 Beginning of the Leopard fish
 Writing and writing some more
 The base fill in.
 More graf please
 Detailed work
 Team A looks after the fish
 wait, is that a Peppermint background about to happen?
 The fish is taking a battering
 Intense painting is happening
 First we sketch, then paint.
 More help is on the way
 Drips are good
 The fish is well and truly fryed
 Ice is here
 Swimming in the city
 The handprints are coming...just wait.
 The Leopard Fish
 What does it say?
 Johannesburg CBD from the top floor
 The design team work intensively
 The view onto Joubert Street
 Sunshine in the City
 Finished piece of work by one of Anstey's top artists.
 The rights of children written onto the wall.
 More words.
 The handprint team are ready to begin
 We are here
 Love your City, it's yours.
 The artists take a break
 Joubert St, Downtown
 Yes we do
 looking bewildered
 A great piece
 Taking a break from the painting
 The artists stand in front of their work
 Fish tonight
 The handprints come out
 Anstey's finest
 Love Joburg
Thank you Johannesburg.