b. 1975, Johannesburg
Lives and works in Cape Town
Known for deconstructing traditional notions of identity and representation, dominated today by contemporary media, branding, marketing and advertising, Asha Zero’s hyper-realistic paintings speak into the various traditions and languages within the history of Modernism and Postmodernism alike, most importantly Realism, Dada, Constructivism, Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, New Realism, and Neo-Expressionism. From this chimeric space Asha Zero effectively merges the seemingly opposing ideologies and conceptual foundations of Pop Art and Abstract Expressionism, confronting the medium of painting with institutionalised norms such as schizophrenia, pastiche, anxiety, erasure and simulacra. Under the guise(s) of imitation, artifice, fragmentation, ambiguity, ubiquity and anonymity, Asha Zero approaches painting on the same conceptual grounds as collage, depicting the everyday spectacle of the human condition through graphic iterations appropriated from the urban landscape and the contemporary media-sphere.
Asha Zero was born in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1975. He currently lives and works in Cape Town, South Africa. Zero received his National Diploma in Fine Arts from the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) in 1997.
Zero presented his first solo exhibition, Winner in Hawaii, in 2004 in Pretoria, South Africa. Notable solo exhibitions include numberrs at Pertwee, Anderson & Gold, London, UK in 2012 and forget about the goohexx: send in the du_plicann at 34FineArt, in Cape Town, South Africa in 2013. Asha Zero presented Untitled in 2015, his first solo exhibition with SMAC Gallery. His latest solo exhibition, errr_evvz, was presented at SMAC Gallery in Cape Town at the end of 2016.
Zero’s work has also been included in numerous group exhibitions and art fairs, both locally and abroad, including Far and Wide at the Absa Towers in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2004; Beeldspraak at the University of Johannesburg, in South Africa in 2006; Scope Art Fair in London, UK in 2008; Decade: Highlights from 10 years of Collecting for the Sanlam Art Collection at the London Art Fair in London, UK, in 2009; Dada South? at the IZIKO South African National Gallery in Cape Town, South Africa in 2009; SALON/locale at Bertram House, Cape Town, South Africa in 2011; Modern Art Projects (MAP) at the University of Johannesburg Art Gallery, South Africa, in 2011; Paint 1: Contemporary South African Painting 2002-2012 at SMAC Gallery, Stellenbosch, in 2012 and Saints and Sinners at Stolen Space Gallery in London, UK in 2014. Asha Zero was included in SMAC Gallery’s presentation at 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair in New York, USA, in 2015.
Asha Zero’s work features in major private and corporate collections, notably the Sanlam Collection, the Jack Ginsberg Collection and the Leridon Collection.
Asha Zero will be included in SMAC Gallery’s upcoming presentation at The Armory Show in New York, USA, from 2 – 5 March 2017.