Keiskamma Guernica

The Keisgamma Guernica. The Keisgamma Guernica.

The Keiskamma Guernica in South Africa is a commemorative embroidery based on the famous painting by the Spanish artist, Pablo Picasso (1881-1973). The painting (1937) depicts the bombing of a village in Spain by German warplanes at the request of the Spanish Nationalist Government.

The Keiskamma Guernica is worked in the same style as the painting, but it does not reflect the instant horror of conventional warfare, but rather the slow destruction of a community by HIV/AIDS. The embroidery relates the panic, sorrow and despair of individuals and families. The Keiskamma Guernica is an appliqué with decorative embroidery. It has the same size as Picasso’s original, namely 3.5 by 7.8 m. It is also worked in the same monochrome colours. The grey brown background is made from the blankets of patients who had stayed at the Keiskamma treatment centre. Other materials come from the traditional skirts of Xhosa women and locally made felt.

The Keiskamma Guernica was designed by Carol Hofmeyr, with the assistance of many others. It was made by the Hamburg Women’s Co-operative (Hamburg, a rural area of the Eastern Cape, South Africa) under the auspices of the Keiskamma Trust. The embroidery was displayed during the Venice Architecture Biennale of 2012, in the Corderie dell' Arsenale, with items by Noero Architects of Johannesberg.

Digital source (retrieved 31 March 2016).

Digital source of information (retrieved 20 June 2016).


Last modified on Friday, 21 April 2017 09:06