Represent Introduces: Anthea Moys
Representah Alana Cremonte is a big fan of performance artist Anthea Moys who is currently dabbling in the inner city… Alana wanted to share the love so that perhaps you too can take a ‘ncane break, a petit pause, una momenta… and smell…the… uh… jacarandas…while reflecting on this mad thing we call life. Sharpile Alana!:
Why are so many people so caught up in their day to day fast-forward, that they forget how easy it is to just take a step back, pause and choose their next direction before moving forth?
I guess they haven’t even realised that they need this luxury. Whether or not that has to do with the fact that this idea hasn’t been properly marketed with an ad campaign yet, is totally besides the point and I think it was small-minded of you to bring it up. To be fair, life does seem to be moving at a tremendous pace these days. So much so that even if you wanted to just stop and smell the roses, you’d find yourself at the back of the queue and desperately treading water.
So, imagine if you had a moment of play forced on you. What if, you were interrupted from your hustle and bustle by “Jozi’s Golden Girls”. A gaggle of grannies, performing a choreographed dance routine in the middle of your city square. Gold and black tracksuits sparkling in the midday sun, good time music as their soundtrack and a young girl in the middle, joining in, almost a part of their world.
Anthea Moys is the performance artist whose incredibly relevant work finds her positioned, both figuratively and literally, in the middle of people’s lives. She is constantly daring South Africa to stop and ask, why? The question is, if confronted with some of her work, would you stop and take it all in? At the very least you’d have to commit to a smile, right?
Most people find a sigh of relief in her performance art. She doesn’t rely on shock tactics to get her message across, but rather, gently holds that proverbial mirror up to show her audience a piece of themselves they have forgotten.
The world has charmed her and she openly admits to being curious of “people in their little worlds”. And that’s what she has consciously worked on showing us, a little glimpse and a “momentary gift” that unites you, so very specially, to anyone else involved. The moment is yours and you can hold your opinion of it close to you heart as you revel in the fact that you are sharing something that will never be recreated, just so, again. It is something that delicately cuts into your day and unexpectedly, affects you into paying attention to your world.
Anthea relies heavily on the concept of play and refers to her pieces as “games”. Whether it’s putting a red cape on a police man or dancing alongside some grannies, the consistent thread seems to be that she delights in sharing other people’s space. And she expresses that in her work by exploring moments in people’s lives and enlisting impromptu audiences to share a moment with her.
She is a breathe of fresh air in a time when the Economic and Political climate has found its way into our air conditioning and is stinking up the office. Anthea manages to create spaces where it’s ok to enjoy yourself and gives her audience the permission they needed to take a deep breathe and just stop. And maybe, if we are lucky, her outlook on this place we call home will rub off on us, her unwitting audience, if we are lucky.
Words and Photo by Alana Cremonte for Represent