The clearance of William Street, District Six signed 'W BESTER' (lower left) mixed media 49 x 59cm (19 1/4 x 23 1/4in).
Provenance: The Baxter Gallery, Cape Town, circa 1989.
As a young boy, Bester's Coloured family were forced to leave their farm and move to a homeland under the Group Areas Act, a law enacted by the National Party government under the apartheid regime, to define and enforce segregation. Under the same Act, on 11 February 1966, the government declared District Six, a vibrant residential area of Cape Town and home to over 60,000 Cape Malays, coloureds, blacks, whites and Asian people, a whites-only area. Residents were forcibly removed and relocated; their houses were bulldozed.
"I was angry...so I used my work as a tool against apartheid. I didn't care if it matched your curtains or not. My art was a chance to be heard."
(The artist, as quoted in C. Spring, Angaza Afrika exhibition catalogue, pg. 62.)