Ephraim Mojalefa Ngatane (South African, 1938-1971)
Figures in a township signed and dated 'E.Ngatane / 70' (lower right) oil on board 75 x 122cm (29 1/2 x 48 1/16in).
Ephraim Ngatane dedicated his artistic career to "portraying the animated variety of the township scene". However, as Rory Bester asserts, Ngatane's work was distinct from many other township depictions of the time, featuring specific locations rather than "picturesque, derivative and ubiquitous examples of 'shantytowns'", and exploring an abstract pictorial language. Bester suggests that Ngatane "lavished exuberant colours on the representation of half-demolished dwellings and despairing figures, and in this way constantly parodied the callousness of apartheid".
BIBLIOGRAPHY: R. Bester (ed.), Ephraim Ngatane: A Setting Apart, (Johannesburg, 2009), pp.6-9