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FUGLY

We spend our lives obsessing about beauty. From the moment we are born, we are brought up to pursue beauty as though it were the north star of our lives. Physical beauty of self is imperative, as it the accumulation and acquisition of material beauty. We are compelled to surround ourselves in this beauty as much as possible. Oftentimes, some rather unattractive things occur in this pursuit. It would seem that beauty and ugliness might be closer than we dare to know...

To help us understand this relationship we are going to look away from beauty and turn towards her grotesque twin for the month of April. I have asked several talented artists to create works of utter hideousness. Being accustomed to painting attractive work, many of them have struggled with this commission. Questions have arisen: Who defines what is ugly? Why are some conventionally-attractive people so unattractive - and why are some ugly people beautiful once we get to know them better? Does ugly really exist? My hope is that by questioning ugliness, we might just learn something about beauty itself.

As the Cape Town artist Georgina Gratrix drily commented while discussing the show: "ugly says more about the person using the word than the object they are trying to describe."

The show will run for the month of April.