I chat to professional contemporary artist Christiaan Diedericks about his interpretation of Saint Corona as part of the Lockdown Collection. He shares his thoughts regarding the impact of the lockdown on South Africa and its artists and tells us why this collection has received global attention.
To see the Lockdown Collection and respective extension thereof, visit: https://artistproofstudio.co.za/collections/the-extension-collection?fbclid=IwAR3XvSU_CYvHigGSXQdt24QY_C5Z8MfZL19Hplvuszlw5VY7gL6Zil_wu0Q
In his conversation with the #OFMArtBeat he mentions a blog article written by Professor Mark Auslander, Director ofthe Michigan State Museum who feels that the Lockdown Collection is one of the most important art platforms during this time. Read the full article here:
Saint Corona (Dark – a single diagnosis of health)
When speaking about his work "Saint Corona" it's very clear that this has been a personal journey for him as an artist. Here is some of his own thoughts about the piece:
Saint Corona actually existed and is especially venerated in Austria and Bavaria as the Patron Saint against plagues and epidemics. In Anzù, Northern Italy, the hotbed of the Coronavirus in Europe, is a basilica where the relics of Saint Victor and Saint Corona are being preserved since the 9th century. Saint Corona was only fifteen when she professed her Christian Faith during the persecution of the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius around 165 AD.
Currently the whole world is in the middle of the novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic with many scientists struggling to develop a vaccine against it. The virus outbreak has also disrupted the daily life of millions of people all over the world and most countries are under strict lockdowns globally.
Saint Corona in my work is depicted as a black man with a crown or halo resembling the novel Coronavirus or Covid-19. The depiction of the saint as a black man specifically refers to geography or place, to Africa and more specifically South Africa where we are still anticipating a major spike in infections. However, the reference to a specific race is a deliberate strategy employed to highlight the vast class divide existing in South Africa. While most privileged white people are able to wait out the imposed lockdown in the comfort of their homes, millions of black people are literally starving to death. This “plaque or epidemic” exposed the terrible reality of scores of hungry black people anticipating food parcels in queues of up to two kilometres in South Africa right now.
To follow Christiaan Diedericks on social media, visit:
And to support him and his work, visit: