David Koloane

David Koloane was born in Johannesburg Alexandra in 1938. Koloane became interested in art during his secondary schooling and began making art in his spare time. He made art in between earning an income through various alternative jobs to support his family.

Between 1974 and 1977 he attended art classes at the Bill Ainslie Studios, which later became the Johannesburg Art Foundation. He started out in a part-time and later full-time art teaching position in a high school. Koloane later went on to become the head of the Fine Art section of the Federated Union of Black Artists (FUBA) in Johannesburg.

Koloane participated in a numerous of The Triangle International Artists Workshops, which gave him the experience needed to establish of the Thupelo Workshops in South Africa. The concept spread to Botswana, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Namibia.

Koloane realised that what was needed in Johannesburg, particularly for Black artists was access to permanent studio space. To this end, he was instrumental in establishing The Fordsburg Artists Studios (The Bag Factory) with Robert Loder and Ricky Burnett in 1991.

David Koloane worked in many ways and techniques. He would combine his own artwork with his social involvement. Koloane contributed to many catalogues, curated exhibitions, sat on judging panels, The National Arts Council advisory panel and delivered numerous papers abroad and at home, while attending workshops and conferences all over the world.

In 1998, the government of The Netherlands honoured Koloane with The Prince Claus Fund Award for his contribution to the development of the visual arts in South Africa.

He was a highly respected and well regarded artist in South Africa who passed on in 2019.

Image credit: #friendsofjag