|After watching every small detail of the 1994 election drama unfold at the CBS bureau, Barker felt it was again time to travel. As a child his parents had taken their holiday at the same camping spot in Malangane on the seemingly idyllic Mozambique coastline each year. That was before civil war wracked the country, fuelled by South African arms. |
A bit like the chaos and the bombings of South Africa's transition to democracy, the end product of Barker's experience was one of the more expressive sessions he has embarked on: tucked in the back of the gallery was a room with exploding hearts of neon, spilling AK47s and ceramic doves, muti jars and cold drink bottles and press photographs.
Steadily, in later installations, Barker would construct his beautiful clutter with more conceptual precision, but even in the jumble of Coke Adds Life his concerns were clear: the value of a life in Africa, the blazing trail of cultural imperialism, trade, and groovy neon and war.
|The Heart of Neon|
Wayne Barker: Artist's Monograph