South African street artist Faith47 paints the world

Faith47's work in LondonFaith47’s work in London

 

anne taylorBy Anne Taylor
5 June 2014

South African artist Faith47 has recently been featured in a piece about female street artists in the New York Times – it’s a great, fascinating read. Apparently photographer Martha Cooper, who has been photographing graffiti culture for decades, says around 1 percent of all street artists are now women – a “significant leap” from the 0.1 percent it had been for years.

Also picking up on Faith47’s extraordinary new work in South Africa and London is art, design and visual culture website This is Collosal: “The artist is known for her use of existential symbolism to comment on nature and the human condition, specifically the struggle of many South Africans who grapple with injustice, poverty, and inequality.”

Of a work in the Free State, the NYT piece includes Faith47’s description of the experience:

Recently, Faith47 the word “love” in large letters across the inside wall of an abandoned factory in the Free State province of South Africa, a “most surreal lost space” where kids from a nearby township played. While she was there, a child suddenly grabbed a long tree root hanging from the ceiling and swung to and fro in front of her wall, over a gaping hole in the floor. “It was as if time stood still,” she said. “The danger of his action and the magic of the light flooding into that time and space.”

Faith47 has work in many countries across the world: according to her website, you can catch glimpses in London, Montreal, Stavanger, Johannesburg, Miami, Tudela, New York, Cape Town, Rome, Honolulu, Vienna, Durban, Puerto Rico, Gaeta, San Benedetto del Toronto and Malaga. As a resident of Cape Town, I am often left breathless by the power of Faith47’s work. It’s quite unlike anything else out there – she represents something etheral yet so brutal about our own realities.