Mooi kinnes & jas laaities
2012 was a good year for artist Dion Cupido.
Besides his two sold out exhibitions, he also had the good fortune to catch singer Beyoncé Knowles’s eye when she bought a painting of his during a visit to the Cape Town.
His next solo exhibition, titled Mooi kinnes & jas laaities, will be on show at the Worldart gallery in Cape Town from 8 – 20 April 2013.
Cupido was born in Mitchells Plain, a rough neighbourhood on the Cape Flats.
“It was interesting times. I have these memories of things that happened to me – the usual problems related to poor neighbourhoods. Through it all though, it never occurred to me that this was bad or different. I loved it there and thought I would never leave. All that mattered was my adolescent obsession with girls, noticing them and going through a lot to be with them. I would sometimes walk far and through dangerous areas to be with them. Looking back, it seems that women had a sort of numbing effect. Without realising it, pursuing them took away the pain associated with living in a place like Mitchells Plain” says Cupido.
Also important was his involvement with graffiti art.
“I remember being fascinated by graffiti art. Before that I thought a good artist was someone who could do flawless sketches of existing things or people. All of a sudden we were communicating in code with big bold letters, competing for attention. “
It is now more than twenty years since he left Mitchells Plain. This exhibition is about what it took to make this individual survive Mitchells Plain. It wasn’t drugs, crime or gangsterism. It was women and art, and it just happened that way.