Stephané E Conradie
Stephané Edith Conradie (b. 1990 Namibia) is a lecturer in printmaking at Stellenbosch University South Africa. Although primarily a trained printmaker, she is known for her bricolage assemblages. She is currently also a PhD candidate in Visual Arts at the University of Stellenbosch, where she completed her MA in Visual Arts (Art Education) and her BA in Visual Arts (Fine Arts). Her research work focuses on trying to make sense of her social and economic ‘situatedness’, in a South African context. Her research stems from a fascination with how people categorise and arrange objects in their homes, particularly her own family members in both Namibia and South Africa. Conradie creates ornate sculptures of entangled objects, inspired by home décor found in lower and working class homes in South Africa. Though seemingly only used for aesthetic purposes or seen as common place, Conradie suggests that they could provide an important lens through which to examine value placement and meaning-making. Her work examines the histories of colonialism and creolisation embedded in domestic material culture, calling into question how identity is encoded in the private domain. These objects have provided her with a language to investigate the creolised formations of identity that are linked to South Africa’s histories of colonialism, slavery, segregation and apartheid. Creolisation directs our attention towards the cultural phenomena and material culture that result from displacement and the ongoing dynamic interchange of symbols and practices, eventually leading to new forms with varying degrees of stability.