Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Elton's Stopover in South Africa

Elton John has taken a keen interest in South African art. The British pop star visited a William Kentridge exhibition and two young up-and-coming artists during a brief trip to Cape Town this month.

His partner, David Furnish, actress Elizabeth Hurley and her husband, Arun Nayar, were among those travelling with John.

He was interested in eight works by twin s and graduates of the Michaelis School for Fine Art, 23-year-olds Hasan and Husain Essop. The pair collaborate, and Husain said that John was interested in their photographic works depicting “South African based issues”.

“It was the best experience,” he said of John’s visit to their Belgravia home. The twin s accepted an invitation to join John and his friends for dinner in Bishopscourt.

“Liz (Hurley) looks exactly the same as she does in her movies, ” Husain said. “Everyone was very interested in our work. Elton. . . understood what we do.”

Husain said it was incredible to think his work might hang inside John’s gallery — reportedly one of the largest private photography collections in the world.

Joe Dolby, director of the South African National Gallery, said John and a group of 14 had viewed Kentridge’s multichannel projected installation, entitled I am not me, the horse is not mine, on January 10.

Prior to their arrival in Cape Town, the group visited the exclusive Royal Malewane Luxury Safari Lodge in Mpumalanga.

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