Bulumko Mbete (b. 1995) is a Johannesburg-based artist and writer with a multicultural heritage. She is a highly-promising emerging talent who has won several awards and is already in several collections.
Mbete is interested in materiality through the use of textile, beading, natural dyeing, and weaving. She creates a framework to communicate generational traditions and gestures of love. Mbete uses archival matter such as photographs, textiles, and clothes to explore the geographic connections and synchronicities within her family in relation to South African history, and its effect on migration, labor, farming, and love.
With much history on the continent still being written and recovered, she finds material culture is a big part of knowledge production, alongside the continuation of oral traditions. Mbete is drawn to memory as a site of remembrance, history, and longing. She believes in generational transmissions of psychological and physiological experiences, which she translates into craft, design, and art.
In the mixed medium prints on show, she weaves together fabric and photographs into their print mediums to present an innovative and exciting new vision.