Taking as its point of departure the Makapansgat Pebble, thought to be the oldest art object ever to have been found, South Africa: the art of a nation explores the history of
South Africa through a selection of its artworks, paying particular attention not only to their relationship to one another, but also to their connections to key episodes in the
nation’s evolution. By setting up a dialogue between past and present, between art objects old and new, the book offers a refreshingly novel way of looking at the
history of South Africa, a story that begins many millennia before the creation of the modern republic.
Published to accompany a major new exhibition at the British Museum, South Africa: the art of a nation provides a welcome change of perspective on the story
of a once-troubled yet resolutely forward-looking nation – by telling that story through its art.
South Africa: the art of a nation
In recent decades, archaeologists in South Africa have discovered some of the world’s oldest artworks – extraordinary examples of humankind’s first artistic endeavours.
Today, South Africa enjoys a vibrant, often politicized contemporary art scene, one that draws on both the recent and the more distant past to comment on the present.
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