The Creative Works Award recognises major creative works, including art works, performances, productions, compositions and architectural designs produced by UCT staff.
The award may be made to jointly-produced creative works, but if non-UCT people are involved, the UCT contributor must have played the biggest role.
Clint Abrahams is an architect and emergent academic at the School of Architecture, Planning & Geomatics at UCT. Abrahams’ Studiolight design-build exhibition Macassar “Who we are” explores the re-authoring of socio-spatial narratives and how these can critically engage the postcolonial challenges of displaced communities in South Africa. It counters dominant stigmatic narratives by re-telling the stories of Macassar, a community blighted by crime and other socio-economic challenges to build community resilience amidst conditions of hopelessness and public mistrust.
Associate Professor Andrew Lilley, based at the South African College of Music (SACM) at UCT, has been honoured for his album, Brother Gone, a compilation of original compositional works recorded for jazz septet. The project is the result of collaborations with the Arts Foundation in Sweden. Swedish jazz musicians have strong roots in the Afro-American jazz tradition and this resonates with the South African context where the style of jazz music is also heavily influenced by this tradition. The title track of the album makes reference to the collective brotherhood in jazz and to those who have passed (gone), their legacies carried forward to produce something new.
Associate Professor Dizu Plaatjies is a lecturer in the African Music section of the South African College of Music at UCT. The multiple award-winning album Ubuntu – The Common String is a CD publication in which Dizu Plaatjies, as arranger-songwriter and solo performer on a wide range of traditional African instruments, discretely blends his artistry with that of younger friends, who contribute to the album with a unique blend of vocals, guitar, percussion and horns. This forward-looking and retrospective work shows that Southern Africa’s older musical traditions are relevant on the global world stage and by example forges a way for a new generation of African musicians.
Hendrik Hofmeyr is Professor and Head of Composition and Music Theory at the South African College of Music, UCT. Hofmeyr’s Second Symphony – The Elements was premiered in 2017 by the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Conrad van Alphen. The symphony is usually regarded as the apex of instrumental writing in any composer’s oeuvre, and this, Hofmeyr’s first purely orchestral symphony, is the first major symphony to emerge in South Africa in more than 30 years.
Dr Sara Matchett recieved the joint award for her theatre production, Womb of Fire. The nomination of Womb of Fire for a UCT Creative Arts Award was inspired by the work’s insistence on addressing how violence in South Africa, over centuries, continues to play itself out on women’s bodies.
Associate Professor Svea Josephy recieved the joint award for her exhibition, Satellite Cities. The exhibition was held at the Wits Art Museum, Johannesburg, 19 January to 6 March 2016 and co hosted by the WITS City Institute. Satellite Cities was a curated exhibition including an impressive body of photographs accompanied by text panels and a catalogue.
Associate Professor François du Toit won the 2017 Creative Works Award for the Five Beethoven Concerti, played on two consecutive nights with the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra. He described the 6-month preparation (5 to 6 hours daily) for the 90-minute concerts as being like “practising for a marathon”.
Associate Professor Jay Pather, director of the Gordon Institute for Performing and Creative Art, re-imagined Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar by creating a theatrical spectacle that included directing, choreography and cabaret and bringing it to bear on the current state of the nation.
Professor Mark Fleishman received the award for his long-running production, Every Year, Every Day, I am Walking. The mostly wordless play traces a fleeing child and her mother's trek from an unnamed and violence-riddled francophone African country, to Cape Town, where the family struggles to settle. Through the eyes of the young girl, global audiences since 2006 have been shown a slice of the battles that the largely invisible migrant community in Cape Town fight continually. It's a story about being violently displaced, the agony of perpetual movement, and the cruelty of hope.
Associate Professor Johann van der Schijff received the award for his catalogue Community Punching Bag. Van der Schijff is a senior lecturer at the Michaelis School of Fine Art where he teaches new media in the undergraduate degree as well as doing postgraduate supervision. His sculptural/new-media works have been exhibited nationally and internationally. His research interests are in the areas of computer-aided design and manufacturing techniques and the design of interactive systems. He says that, growing up in South Africa and living in a violent country and continent, questions of power relations in society underlie much of his work. This forces the viewer into a position of choice in their engagement with his artworks.
Emeritus Professor Michael Godby of the Michaelis School of Fine Art received the award for The Lie of the Land – Representations of the South African landscape, an exhibition he curated in 2010 and 2011. The project included scholarly essays on literary, cultural, political and environmental aspects of the South African landscape. It was carefully designed to showcase and celebrate a vigorous tradition of South African art, not only engaging with the role of land through South African history, but also clarifying the changing stylistic strategies for representing land at different points in South Africa's history.
Professor of sculpture at the Michaelis School of Fine Art, Gavin Younge received the award for his 2011 solo exhibition Cheval de Bataille, a project commissioned by the French Monuments Council and which was housed in the Forteresse de Salses, a fortress in France that has run a vigorous contemporary art programme for many years.
Professor Michael 'Jo' Noero, of the School of Architecture, Planning and Geomatics was awarded the prize specifically for his design of the Red Location Museum of Struggle, located in Red Location, New Brighton, in the Eastern Cape. One of the oldest settled black townships of Port Elizabeth and a prominent anti-apartheid struggle site, Red Location has been the home of some of the country's leading political figures.
Associate Professor Fritha Langerman of UCT's Michaelis School of Fine Art won the inaugural Creative Works Award for her work Subtle Thresholds. The exhibition, which was a curated mixed-media work with objects from the collections of the South African Museum and the University of the Witwatersrand's Adler Museum, had as its themes the classification of disease and the representation of speciation.