Lalelanie Mbhele

Lalelani’s talent did not come as a surprise; at the early age of ten his artistic talent was noticed by his Primary school teacher, who encouraged him to draw diagrams on chalkboards and make illustrations for the class.  He spent most of his free time drawing and found it an “enjoyable and fulfilling experience”. When Lalelani reached Grade11, his class teacher Mrs.Ntanzi introduced him to the BAT Centre in Durban where he attended part time art classes. At the end of 1993, one of Lalelani’s first clients granted him with a bursary to attend classes on a part time basis at the Department of Fine Art at the Durban University of Technology.  
Lalelani is presently working as a fulltime artist from his studio at the BAT Centre, where he specialises in the medium of painting.    Although he has a preference for working on large canvases he is regularly commissioned to do murals, illustrations and design work and is adept in sign writing and ceramics.  His paintings are executed with bright colours in a unique and creative manner and are carefully considered.  Prominent in his artworks is an added element of humour and wit.  He says that his paintings are a vehicle through which he communicates his passion for that which is happening around him.  

1996        African Art Centre programme

1997        BAT Centre Art Programme

1998        BAT Centre Art Programme

1999        Durban University of Technology, Part time art classes


1997        African Art Centre (Group exhibition)

1998        KZNSA (Group exhibition)

1999        BAT Centre “Burning Canvas”

2003        Gateway, Nedbank (displayed drawings)

2008        BAT Centre Solo Exhibition “Igxathu”

2009        Karoo (Prince Albert Gallery), Zulus in Karoo, Group Exhibition
2010        Joint Exhibition with Bhekinkosi Gumbi, African Art Centre


2000        Development Interface (Illustrations)

2002        UKZN Press “Theatrical Parables” book cover

2003        Book Illustrations “Our Story Magic”


1998        Spoornet (mural) Umlazi station

1998        SAB (mural) BAT Centre Hall

2000        Azazel Institute (Mural & Interior Deco)Umhlanga

2004        BAT Centre (Mural of Remembrance)

2006        Durban Station (Mural painting) Cell C

2009        Prince Albert Cape Town (Mural)

Awards and Achievements 

1999        Ithala Poster Competition

2000        Merit Certificate, Highest final result, distinction awarded in Two-
                Dimensional Studies.  

2003        Contributed towards the painting of the costumes for the ICC
                 Cricket World Cup and was part of the crew of the “Costume/ Art Department”

Teaching Experience
2003        Place of safety, Pinetown

2007        Bat Centre Art Programme, fulltime

2008        Bat Centre Art Programme, fulltime
2010        Facilitated a Beautiful Boots Workshop at the African Art Centre
2010        Facilitated a Makarapa Workshop at the African Art Centre
2014       ‘Retroactive’ a street art project and exhibition (KZNSA Gallery)

Exhibitions at the KZNSA

Mezzanine Gallery