Lesiba Mabitsela is a South African interdisciplinary artist and Fashion Practitioner born in Pretoria, Gauteng (1987) and is based between Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa.
Mabitsela uses performance theory, photography, video and costume as soft sculpture to trouble notions of African male identities including: masculine conventions, the abject black male body, consumer culture and sites of memory.
The former Tshwane University of Technology graduate in Fashion Design and Technology has gone on to work for fashion design houses such as St. Lorient Fashion & Art Gallery in Brooklyn, Pretoria and Gavin Rajah Atelier in Cape Town before carving out his own unique vision in the space between fashion and art.
Mabitsela is a former recipient of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation scholarship contributing to the completion of his Master of the Arts degree at the University of Cape Town’s Drama Department within the Faculty of Humanities. He was part of a cohort whose practice was guided by the multidisciplinary studies offered under the auspices of the Institute for Creative Arts (formerly known as GIPCA).
2018: Afrovibes Festival - Amsterdam, Den Haag, Rotterdam
2018: Live Arts Network Africa (LANA) - Cape Town, South Africa
2017: Live Arts Festival - Cape Town, South Africa
2016: Infecting the City (exhibited as part of the Hi!jACK Collective)– Cape Town, South Africa 2015 Vrystaat Kunstefees - Bloemfontein, South Africa
2015: Infecting the City - Cape Town, South Africa
2015 Alternative Opening of Parliament Fashion Parade - Partnered by AFAI (the African Arts Institute) and the Prince Claus Art Fund.
2013: DEMONSTRATIONS - Performing Being Black curated by Khanyisile Mbongwa, Gugulethu, Cape Town, South Africa
2019: ‘The Main Complaint’, Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, Cape Town, South Africa
2017: ‘Dress Code’ Gallery MOMO, Cape Town, South Africa
2016: ‘Material City’ curated by Sandile Radebe in association with Everard Read Gallery (exhibited as part of the Hi!jACK Collective) Everard Read Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
2013: Movement curated by Abdul Dube, Fairweather House, Cape Town, South Africa
2013: DEMONSTRATIONS - Performing Being Black curated by Khanyisile Mbongwa Brundyn+ Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
Residencies, Conferences and Workshops:
2020: globalising mens style conference hosted by the London College of Fashion Masculinities Research Hub, university of the arts london
2019: Rewoven - Future of Fashion Conference, Johannesburg, South Africa (Workshop contributor)
2019: Decolonizing Fashion, Refashioning Objects in the Ethnographic Museum, National Museum of World Cultures, Amsterdam & Leiden, Netherlands (Invited Participant)
2016: OPENLab2016 - The Art of Being Social, Bloemfontein, South Africa (Co-Facilitator)
2015: Reitir - International Collaboration Project, Siglufjordur, Iceland (Participant)
2014: OPENLab2014 - The Art of Being Public - Exploration in Site-Based Practices, Bloemfontein, South Africa (Participant)
2020 Institute for Creative Arts Virtual Fellowship, Cape Town, South Africa
2017 Winner of the Puncture Points Art competition commissioned by Burgan Cape Terminals with supported from Gulfstream Energy, Cape Town, South Africa
2016 Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Scholarship, Cape Town, South Africa
2014 Samsung Inspire Design Winner: Fashion Design
2014Design Indaba Expo: First Editions
All garments are made to order.
please contact us by email about garment purchases or For more info, including enquiries on original photographic prints and bookings please send mail to:
lesiba: lesibamabitselastudio @gmail.com