Michael MacGarry

Visual artist

It was a big year for visual artist/designer/author Michael MacGarry. Despite holding down a full time job at Fever Identity Design, in 2008 MacGarry exhibited his solo work and the work of visual art collective Avant Car Guard at a national and international level; was nominated for the MTN New Contemporaries Awards; designed and illustrated a design-reference book titled A Primer in South African Graphic Design and co-published The Pavement Special, a tri-annual magazine dedicated to independent South African music. But it was MacGarry's solo exhibitions When Enough PeopleStart Saying the Same Thing at the Brodie/Stevenson gallery in Johannesburg and True/Story at the KwaZulu-Natal National Art Gallery in Durban that really identified MacGarry as one of the important young visual artists in South Africa today. His solo work � which sees MacGarry working in various media including sculpture, largescale photography and editioned bronzes � explores his overarching concern with the machinations of imperialism in Africa. MacGarry moved away from his conceptually-based dogma, dubbed "All Theory No Practice�, in which he wrote about ideas, concepts, artworks, themes, film treatments, which he never produced or exhibited as material objects. But his new work sees him creating a series of props, sculptures and large-scale stills from these unrealised works. MacGarry's tongue-in-cheek work with his fellow Avant Car Guards Zander Blom and Jan-Henri Booyens has also created quite a stir, with their punk, nothing-issacred attitude towards the South African Art world that had the trio throwing dirt on artist Kendall Geers's grave and turning William Kentridge into Frankenstein.� Lloyd Gedye

Lunch spot: Sophia's in Rosebank, Johannesburg