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Mary Sibande

South Africa

Mary Sibande is a South African artist based in Johannesburg. She creates painting and sculptures of in which she explores the construction of identity in a postcolonial South African context. Her works celebrate the hard work, strength, love, hope, and imagination that carried so many black South African women – her mother, grandmother, and great grandmother included – through apartheid in South Africa.


A main feature in all of her works is a sculpture named Sophie. Sophie is molded after Sibande herself and is like her alter-ego. Sibande's sculpture draws energy from the long history of female domestic workers, during the apartheid and post-apartheid. The sculpture, Sophie, attempts to critique the long history of oppression in South Africa.

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