Exhibition: The Women in My Life by Michael Soi, Aug. 24 -Sept. 9 2016 @ Circle Art Gallery
Until: September 9, 2016
The Women in My Life – Mother, Sister, Daughter, Granny, Aunt, Friend, Life Partner
Born in 1972, Michael Soi graduated in fine art and art history before joining Kuona Trust in 1996. He worked as an arts administrator at Kuona Trust before delving into full time practice in 2010.
Working from his studio at the GoDown Art Centre, he has participated in numerous artist workshops/residencies and exhibited widely locally and internationally and has a huge following of collectors and enthusiasts globally.
With a reputation of producing imagery of commercial sex workers and characters of not-so-reputable character, Soi’s work has been misconstrued to glorify immorality while demeaning women. He has come under immense scrutiny and has had to explain his position/opinion in regard to women. The Women in My Life is the artist’s response to this and is more of a celebration of the fine women who have played an integral part in his life helping shape the human being that he has become. “They have all had a very positive role – socially, spiritually or even those who broke my heart….LOL!” says he.
“The Women in My Life is in a nut shell a celebration of all the women I interact with on a day to day basis. They are all the women in my life. My mom, my sister, my daughter, my best friend, my clients, workmates and the girls I see on the street,” says Soi.
Soi says he is not intent on telling any story but is just documenting the nuances that remind him of some of them. The mundane things like the garment they wear, their preferred hair style, their sunglasses of choice and other little things that remind him of his interaction with them – whether professionally or personally.
This is a very personal statement from the artist as most people only publicly recognize women in their life’s contribution on designated days – International Women’s Day, Mother’s Day etc and rarely do it beyond a bouquet of flowers and a box of chocolates. This tribute to women is his acknowledgement of these unnamed individuals who not only continue contributing to his life lessons and his everyday delight but also go a long way to giving him a lifetime of happiness.