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Last Fall I received a Mellon Grant to research contemporary art in South Africa while studying abroad at the University of Cape Town. During my time in Cape Town I worked independently with a Professor at the Michaelis School of Fine Arts and visited an array of museums and galleries and traveled to Johannesburg to learn more about South African history and art. I became particularly interested in the portrayal of the urban landscape in South African art , the theme of my thesis topic.My thesis looks at the process behind animation in the work of the South African artist, William Kentridge, in order to explore the relationship between landscape and memory. I propose that the recreation of land through art reveals how we construct memory and history in social, political, and geographical terms. In my thesis I look at Kentridge’s animated film, Felix in Exile (1994), which provides insight into the ways in which the artist remembers and reimagines land, specifically in South Africa, and raises the question, does landscape reveal or conceal history.

Professor Edward Vazquez (Advisor)

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