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Berni Searle: Approach

October 27 – December 16, 2006
USF Contemporary Art Museum

Berni Searle, By Night, 2003, Lambda print, ED. 9 +1AP

Berni Searle: Approach, is a multidimensional program with internationally celebrated South African artist, whose work in performance, photography, film and video installation address racial and gender inequities through the use of her body, personal histories and the construction of personal mythologies. After just over a decade of democracy, contemporary South African artists are examining identity and culture, and the clash of modern technologies with traditional practices and values.

Berni Searle, through poetic examination and exemplification of her multi-racial heritage and female gender, brings these concerns to a global stage. As part of this exhibition, Searle will work with the Graphicstudio, the distinguished artist workshop at the University of South Florida, to create a suite of prints. Cape Town born and based, Searle graduated from the Michaelis School of Fine Art, University of Cape Town, with an M.F.A. degree in 1995. Her first foray into the international arena came in 1998 when she received the UNESCO award for her work, Red, Yellow, Brown from the Colour Me series at the 7th International Cairo Biennale. In 2000 she was nominated for the NB Vita Award and received the Daimler-Chrysler Award for South African Contemporary Art. In 2001 she was awarded a Civitella Ranieri Fellowship and was named Standard Bank Young Artist for 2003.

Check out our Media Gallery to watch a symposium with Berni Searle and guests, and to see a video walk-through of her exhibition.

Exhibition Brochure | Checklist

Berni Searle, WAITING #3, 2003
Lithographs on BFK Rives watercolour paper
20 x 26 inches, 6 prints per edition

Searle's work is included in a number of private collections as well as the permanent collections of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington DC, the Buhl Foundation, New York, the South African National Gallery, Cape Town and the Australian Parliament, Canberra.In 2005, Searle was selected to exhibit at the 51st Venice Biennale for the exhibition Always a little further, curated by Biennale co-director Rosa Martinez. In September 2006 she will exhibit a selection of video works at the BildMuseet in Umeå, Sweden. In addition to her solo shows at the Michael Stevenson Gallery, Cape Town, and the Johannesburg Art Gallery, South Africa, and the University of South Florida this fall, Berni Searle will also be included in the group exhibition, Global Feminisms, as the premier opening exhibition for the Elizabeth A Sackler Centre, Brooklyn Museum, New York in March, 2007.

Berni Searle, About to Forget (stills), 2005. Three-channel video projection shot on 35mm cinemascope film.
Duration 3 minutes. Edition: 5 + AP

The Berni Searle project at USF is made possible by the Members and Corporate Partners of the USF Institute for Research in Art, and is supported in part with the assistance of the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.