Michèle Nigrini

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MICHÈLE NIGRINI was born 1965 in Pretoria and matriculated in 1982 from Afrikaans Hoër Meisieskool. She completed a certificate in Tourism at the Pretoria Technikon in 1983 and then went on to study Fine Arts at the University of Pretoria under Prof. N.O.Roos and artists such as Jean Kotze, Gunther van der Reiss, John Clarke and Judith Mason. She then did a BA Honours History of Art in 1992 after which she was ultimately awarded an MA (Fine Arts) in 1993.

Michèle attracted nationwide interest in 1994, when the Rupert Art Foundation bought all of the available work on her first solo exhibition, including her MA degree installation Kleursimfonie, a 16 metre panel consisting of nearly 300, A4-sized paintings. This installation is currently in the permanent collection of the Rupert Museum in Stellenbosch and is exhibited every few years. This once in a lifetime event launched her career as a professional artist.

Highlights of her career include 22 solo exhibitions, the most recent of which was Outside In – a solo exhibition at the Imibala gallery in Graaff-Reinet which was part of a three-way collaboration hosted by the Rupert Museum and centred around Kleursimfonie.

Nigrini has also taken part in more than 200 group exhibitions including Two Women: Maud Sumner & Michèle Nigrini at the Pretoria Art Museum in 1993. Her work has been included in the Florence Biennial, Italy, 2005; Chianciano Biennial, Italy, 2009; and, by invitation, the London Biennial, 2013. Nigrini has participated in a number of art residencies, including two visits to the Cite des Arts in Paris.

In addition to her art making, Nigrini has conducted numerous lectures and workshops on colour and creativity, done documentary installations such as The Life of Johannes Kerkorrel (kknk 2003). She has been the artistic director for audio and visual stage productions (Metamorph, Karin Hougaard, Die Hart is ‘n eensame jagter, Johannes Kerkorrel) and animated for Filmverse I and Filmverse II.

Since 2004, she has been living and working in Rosendal, Eastern Free State, where her work is permanently displayed at the Ark Contemporary gallery. Her work is included in collections held by corporates, museums, universities and private individuals all over the world.