From A Small Village In Limpopo To Owning An Art Gallery In Jozi At 21Yrs Old

Giggs Kgole views his 3D art collection – Yes, you need to wear 3D glasses

AT 21 years old, Giggs Kgole is probably one of of the world’s youngest owners of an art gallery. From his upbringing in a rural village of Kutupu in Limpopo where his love for all things art began with moulding mud houses and tractors, Kgole managed to beat 3000 applicants to become one of 25 to be selected for the prestigious St John’s College scholarship. From then on the sky was the limit but not without life’s little knocks.

The Houghton-based college was a far cry from his earlier schooling in Tembisa, east of Johannesburg. The teaching methods and educational standards were more demanding and different but his mother’s words of wisdom kept propelling him forward: “A man who is weak and seeks help gains more wisdom than the one who is too proud.” His experience at the initiation school at the age of 12 – a rite of passage from adolescence into manhood – would mould his emotional and physical strength and character. It is the teachings here that would not only help him face his challenges through his journey at St John’s and his later studies in Europe, but he would also explore this otherwise misunderstood, although extremely important ritual which exists among many cultures worldwide, through his art.

Fast forward to 2017 and the now internationally acclaimed visual artist Kgole meets multi media artist Oscar Noriega at the John Cabot University in Rome, Italy and the two decide to open a gallery in Johannesburg.

Inspired by the similarity in their poverty-stricken backgrounds, the two called their gallery GasLamp which they say is a metaphor for the light and hope they wish to inspire in young people and the communities from which they come. “We created a GasLamp that guides young people through the dark times and inspires hope. Our mission is to show the world that there is light especially for young creators,” they say.

After a year of planning and exhibiting their work, the two have opened a versatile space that offers creatives a platform to showcase their work. It is a space which has a place for high tea and make-up tutorials on one day, art talks and lessons on painting techniques, on another.

 GasLamp is on 12 Lower Ross St, New Doornfontein, Johannesburg. 

Contact them on: 064-269-6095


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