What is a Home without a Father?

What is a Home without a Father?

Date: 1994
Dimensions: L7,5m x H4m (wall piece)
Media: Plastic, resin, wax, cane, metal, lead


Part of the “What is a home?” series


Andries Botha on “What is a home without a father?


This was the very first work I began to work on, that which later morphed into a much larger work called “What is a Home?” I had a very strong sense of anticipation that despite the hopelessness of the political debate, that we were all sitting on the cusp of major change in the political landscape of South Africa.


In trying to understand how to script a creative work, one that anticipates your inner life as well as expressing that life in the events which evolve outside of you.


It was at that time that I began to feel very strongly that what we were facing in Africa, irrespective of one’s racial orientation, was mythic and physical absence of the masculine. It was as if the masculine narrative had abdicated and no longer had an integrated role other than that of the executioner of certain banal brutal physical events.


This work, in a way, is a great meditation on not only my own but also that of other manifestations of aberent African masculinity. In order to understand this absence as an internal personal loneliness, I began to look for the answers within the epic or mythic narrative.


The materials I used were a combination of organic as well as industrial waste materials.


I saw the massive work that was to comprise of six pieces, eventually, where this was the first wall piece – or relief.


Although this work is a stand alone work on its own, I believe it generates greater resonance when it is seen in combination with the other works:


“The Dance”


“Still Life”

“History of Monuments”

“To Touch or to Challenge”