Year of South Africa: Collection of Violet and Les Payne | Exhibition at the Godwin-Ternbach Museum, Queens College

Year of South Africa: Collection of Violet and Les Payne | Exhibition at the Godwin-Ternbach Museum, Queens College
past about 3 years ago

Starts: Thursday, 5 February, 2015 04:00pm

Ends: Saturday, 21 March, 2015 09:00pm

Event Details

February 5 - March 21, 2005

The Collection of Violet and Les Payne, a selection of artwork collected by Les Payne, a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, during his time reporting in Johannesburg, South Africa between 1976-1985, will be on display on the first floor of the gallery. The Payne collection is focused on works on paper and paintings by artists from the black township of Soweto, Johannesburg. Payne was a journalist reporting during the 1976 Soweto Uprising, a massive and violent series of student protests. Payne returned to South Africa in 1985 to report on the changes that had taken place during the intervening years. It was during these trips that he collected artwork from Soweto artists. The artists created works that captured everyday life as well as a sense of hope despite the immense turmoil that surrounded them. Artists in the collection include Velaphi Mzimba, Hargreaves Ntukwana, David Mbele, Winston Saoli, and Percy Konqobe, many of whom have gone on to be internationally recognized.


2/5 - Opening Reception and talk by Les Payne

Date TBA - Roundtable on Global and African Apartheid with Les Payne, Satadru Sen (QC History Department) and Richard Knight (Director of Archive for African Activism)

3/19, 6pm - ART/ACTIVISM: Discussion and Performance on Art as Socia Activism with Martha Wilson (Franklin Furnace founder and artist), Riccardo Valentine (Brother(hood) Member), and Maureen Connor (QC Art Department). Followed by performances by activitst dance collective Brother(hood) and reading by Tonya Foster (CCNY author)

Dates TBA - Interactive video "Artist's Talk" with Q&A betweein S. African photographers in the exhibition.

Film Series - Wednesdays during the exhibition


Museum Hours
Mon.–Thurs. 11 am to 7 pm, Sat. 11 am to 5 pm

Please note that the museum, located in Klapper Hall, Room 405, is not open on holidays and when the college is closed.

Admission is free.

Please call the museum for updated programs and schedules, (718) 997-4747, or visit this website,, for further information.