Johannes Maswanganyi

I am a Tsonga/Shangaan artist born on 17 August 1949 in Giyani (former Gazankulu Homeland). I presently live at Noblehoek Village under Chief Msengi Traditional Authority in the Great Giyani Municipality in Limpopo Province.
I did not have any formal art training. I was taught by my father to carve functional objects from wood. This gift of carving came to me in a sleep in the form of a vision.  In 1965 the African community was thankful for the products of my work. I helped the community with carved wooden cooking spoons mainly to cook porridge, bowls and musical instruments. In the same year I began making wooden nyamisoros, mortars, yokes, medicine wooden bottles (nhunguvani), and pictures of animals and images of people. It also became easy for me to make historical images.
I am teaching interested young and old people how to carve and how to make clay pots and beadworks. It is through God’s blessing that I was able to produce artwork of such a high state of creativity. My artwork attracted the attention of overseas business people. I flew to Munich, Germany to hold exhibitions in September 1995.
Among the numerous exhibitions, I succeeded in displaying my talent in the following exhibitions (seslections):
1985       Tributaries African Museum in progress Johannesburg
BMW – Munich, Germany
1986       University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg
1987       Solo Exhibition, Market Gallery, Walldorf School, Johannesburg
1988       Vita Art (now: Johannesburg Art Gallery); Fuba Gallery, Johannesburg
1989       Art from South Africa MOMA Oxford and other venues, United Kingdom
1993       Biennial of Visual Art, Venice Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg Everard Read Gallery, Johannesburg
1994       Bayrische Vereinsbank, Palais Preysing, Munich, Germany
1996       African Leadership Foundation inc, New York, USA
2000       Art Gallery Knysna, Mukondeni Gallery, Randburg
2001       Pietersburg Art Gallery
2003       Development Bank of South Africa
2004       Waterfront Noble Square Project, Cape Town
2005       Bag Factory, Newtown, Johannesburg, Fried Contemporary Art Gallery, Pretoria
2007       Dunga Manzi Stirring Waters
2008       Art and Justice: The Art of the Constitutional Court of South Africa
2009       Art Space Gallery