Dineo Seshee Bopape 〰️ [when spirituality was a baby]


Dineo Seshee Bopape’s new installation at Collective has been created in relation to the rich history of timekeeping, spirituality, geology and astronomy at the Observatory site. Combining carefully selected materials and forms, the work considers notions of cosmology, astronomy and astrology in complex ways generally ignored or discredited by Western science.

Through her expansive practice, Dineo has explored memory (personal, collective, known and unknown), narration, and representation as contingent forms. Drawing on a diverse range of visual and conceptual matter, her work often utilises commonplace materials (soil, bricks, timber) and archival images, as well as natural and technological systems as support. Through her installation-based work, Dineo’s immediate environment becomes a radical site of activation, bringing the celestial and the earthly, the bodily and the metaphysical, the personal and collective into coalescence. More recently, Dineo has shifted her attention to matters of sovereignty in the age of the Anthropocene and its attendant issues of land and landlessness that shape our present.

Located in the historic City Dome, her new installation combines an array of ‘raw materials’, sculptural forms, and symbols in a constellation of relationality,each containing a specific connection to cosmological and spiritual apparatus. Produced over a period of nine months, the installation appears as a site of ritual, a shrine or sanctuary that contains its own universe of interactions, energies and substances alongside those of the site. Time has shaped all elements of the installation. Physically, time has allowed elements of the work to dry, ferment and smoke; shaping them in unexpected and uncontrolled ways. Drawn from the aesthetics and structures of Afrodiasporic spiritual practices, the objects are plotted across the space in relation to particular star charts and astrological constellations.

Press Release, Collective, November 2018 © Osei Bonsu, 2018.


 Installation views, Dineo Seshee Bopape, 〰️ [when spirituality was a baby], Collective © Collective, Photography by Tom Nolan.


 Installation views, Dineo Seshee Bopape, 〰️ [when spirituality was a baby], Collective © Collective, Photography by Ali Wright.