CHAD ROSSOUW The Planet’s Wake
2348- The scientific expedition to Kepler 10c arrived. Their mission was to find out why the planet’s mass was so anomalous for a rocky planet. As they began to drill core samples, something stirred beneath the surface. 1589- Royal Magician John Dee realized that the secret to telling the future was not his obsidian mirror, nor the charlatan Edward Kelley, but rather a careful examination of the past. 46BCE- Julius Caesar required a slave to walk behind him during his triumph through Rome. The slave’s sole duty was to whisper in his ear, “The glories of the world are fleeting.” 2004- The SAS Mendi arrived in South Africa. It was purchased as part of the multi-billion rand Strategic Defence Acquisition. 1908- Italian archaeologist Luigi Pernier uncovered a clay disc 15cm round, while excavating a Minoan palace. It became known as the Phaistos disc. The text pressed into it is the only example of a unique and untranslatable writing system. 24 July 2014- Chad Rossouw’s The Planet’s Wake opens at BRUNDYN+. The exhibition comprises sculptures, prints, photographs and drawings.
The Planet’s Wake takes its cue from many sources. It is distinctively inspired by science fiction and fantasy narratives like the Terminator franchise and George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones, but also looks to medieval manuscripts and weapons, translations and mistranslations, apocalypse, classical Rome and apocryphal stories. Linking these sources are three underlying concerns: a worry about truth, authenticity, irony and fakery; the weight of history, both personal and South African; and a fascination with ruins and fragments.
Correspondingly, the works span diverse media, from faux paint effects, woodcuts and marble, through to digital paintings, vintage photographic techniques and video.
Chad Rossouw is a Cape Town based artist, writer and educator. He was born in 1982, in the bleak suburbs of Table View. He obtained his Masters Degree with distinction from the University of Cape Town in 2011. He has been on numerous group shows and examples of his work reside in the Iziko South African National Gallery’s collection and the New Church Museum collection. Presently he is teaching photography at the Ruth Prowse School of Fine Art in Cape Town. This is his second solo exhibition at BRUNDYN+.