Nicholas Hlobo, winner of this year’s Standard Bank Young Artist Award, has worked hard to get to where he is today. He is extremely ambitious and equally determined to be remembered as one of South Africa’s great artists who has preserved and celebrated the South African culture.
Nicholas and the Standard Bank Young Artist Awards Most people in South Africa knew very little about Nicholas’ incredible talent, but after winning the Standard Bank Young Artist Award, he proudly took his place as one our country’s most promising young artists. More and more people started taking note and an appreciation was born for his unique, proudly South African, art .
“Being South African is as much a part of me as being a part of the Hlobo family. I can never divorce myself from it,” explains Nicholas passionately. ”I’ve been to cities all over the world, but nothing compares to Johannesburg. South Africa’s future is bright and alive with possibilities, however the brightness depends on us as South Africans. Being South African is very sentimental and spiritual for me.”
Nicholas is proud to be the winner of this award because he believes that Standard Bank’s involvement has encouraged young people and educated the public about South Africa’s artistic landscape.
Nicholas and his art Nicholas describes his art as non-conventional, saying he uses it to uplift South Africa and the African continent.
“Art is a great tool for storytelling and I use it to give an insider view into South Africa’s history and my heritage,” he says. “My art is centered around issues like masculinity, gender, race and ethnicity and the idea of cutting off ailments that do not fit into society and then mending them back together, so that these different elements can exist in society harmoniously, with all issues resolved and improved.”
Nicholas Hlobo’s message To youngsters who want to achieve similar success in their lives, Nicholas has the following message: “Be ready for hard work, it’s easy to become disheartened. Keep striving for what you believe in and be ready for criticism as non-conventional art is often misunderstood. Believe in yourself, work hard and you will benefit and grow from your efforts. You are born with a talent but it is up to you to nourish it and let it grow.”