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From a young age, Meshack “Shakes” Tembani loved art and started exploring different avenues of expression in a variety of mediums such as painting and mosaic. With a distinctive, stylized and almost naïve technique, he invites viewers to contemplate the beautiful in the seemingly ordinary by using bold and flat colours. Inspired by the everyday experiences faced by him and his community, Tembani depicts these, often concentrating on strong female figures in his neighbourhood i.e. women who are the breadwinners, church goers, single parents and entrepreneurs 

Tembani grew up in the New Crossroads township (Cape Town) where he still lives and works. In 1998 he completed a Certificate in Visual Arts with the Community Arts Project. This was followed by a Certificate in Screen-printing, paper-mache, fabric painting and craft at Ruth Prowse College of Art and Design (1999). He then completed Diploma in Adult Education at the University of Cape Town in 2003 and a Product Design and Development Course at Madesa the next year. Tembani was a resident artist at the Castle of Good Hope Art Studios for a few years. He has had a number of solo exhibitions and has participated in many group exhibitions both locally and abroad. Tembani’s work has been commissioned by companies and institutions and appears in several collections globally. 



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Title: Mothers of the nationVIII (25825)
Size: 30 x 20 cm
Media: Oil on canvas
Price: R 3 500 unframed


2007 - 2011       

Resident artist at Castle of Good Hope Art Studios

2004  Product Design and Development Course, Madesa, Observatory
2003 Diploma in Education: Adult Education, University of Cape Town
2001 Certificate: Visual Art, Art’s Cool
1999  Certificate: Screen printing, papier-mâché, fabric painting and craft, Ruth Prowse College of Art and Design 
2003   Certificate: Artists as Teachers Learnership Programme, iBhahatane Project, Frank Joubert Art Centre
1998   Certificate in Visual Arts, Community Arts Project

UNQULO, AVA, Cape Town

2009    Just Dogs, AVA, Cape Town

KNOOP / KNOP, Gallery University Stellenbosch

2020 We’ve come to take you home, Michaelis Gallery, UCT, Cape Town
2019  Returning the Gaze, Cape Gallery
2019  The Emerging Artist Development Trust, Travelling Gallery Mouille Point
2019  Tulbagh Art Festival, Tulbagh
2019  The Travelling Gallery, Frankfurt, Stuttgart
2019   The Travelling Gallery, Munchen, Germany
2017   Soho Pop Up Exhibition, London
2014   Telling our Story, The Cape Gallery, Cape Town
2014  Talking about Cape Town, The Cape Gallery, Cape Town
2014   Social Synergy, The Cape Gallery, Cape Town
2012   Mini me, AVA, Cape Town
2010     A dip into the World of Visual Arts in Cape Town, Embassy of Spain
2010   Tombola and the Art Reaching Fund, AVA, Cape Town
2009   Art Reach in Progress, AVA, Cape Town
2009    Studio Visit, AVA, Cape Town
2009  RE-CM, Waterfront, Cape Town
2008  Soul of Africa (DBSA), Johannesburg
2008 Art Reach, The Best of 2008, AVA, Cape Town
2007 Making Space, Castle of Good Hope, Cape Town
2006 Face (In) Cape Town, Castle of Good Hope, Cape Town
2004 Members Exhibition, AVA, Cape Town
2002  Annex Gallery, Cape Town


2009        Vuleka Art Competition Finalist

Painting: University of Cape Town

2004   Mosaic: Kwalanga Construction of Wall Murals
2004    Seven Pebbles Mirror: Accommodation facility Robben Island
2002 Mosaic: Arabella Hotel, Western Cape
2001   Mosaic Mural: Clock Tower Hotel
2001 Mosaic: Red Cross
1999     Mural and Mosaic design and Wall construction: Guga Sthebe Centre, Kwalanga
  1. Irma Stern Museum
  2. The Cape Gallery, Cape Town
  3. State of the Art Gallery, Cape Town
  4. Ebony Gallery, Franschoek
  5. School of Economics, University of Cape Town
  6. The Gite Gallery, Houston, USA
  7. Haven Holdings, Johannesburg
  8. Nando’s Art Collection
  9. Spier Art Collection
  10. Hollard Art Collection
  11. Art Innsbruk, Germany 2020
  12. Roussouw Modern Art Gallery, Hermanus
  13. Association for Visual Arts Gallery (AVA), Cape Town
  14. ArtChemistry Gallery, Netherlands
  15. ARTsouthAFRICA Gallery
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