About the artist

Lakwena Maciver creates painted prayers and meditations which respond to and re-appropriate elements of popular culture. Exploring the role of the artist as mythmaker, with their use of acid-bright colour and bold typographic text, her paintings act as a means of decolonisation, subtly subverting prevailing mythologies. Her approach is instinctive and autodidactic, producing visceral, rhythmic and immersive panel paintings, iconic murals and installations.

 

Challenging both the external and the internalised voice of mass media, Lakwena has created works in the public realm internationally, from installations at Tate Britain, Somerset House, Facebook and the Southbank Centre in London, to a juvenile detention centre in Arkansas, a monastery in Vienna, and the Bowery Wall in New York City.

 

Lakwena’s most recent body of work focuses on the interplay between her practices as both artist and mother of two young sons. Responding to feminist author bell hooks’ essay Homeplace (a site of resistance), and in the tradition of African women across the diaspora, Lakwena is painting the walls of her home to create a space of affirmation, empowerment and resistance. Conceived in the context of the continuing threat to the lives of young black men, these paintings counteract various forms of oppression, both subtle and overt. The creation of a space of protection and healing takes on a wider meaning in the current reality of lockdown. The duration of this time will see the artist produce a series of panel paintings to this end, to be documented through the artist and Vigo gallery’s instagram accounts. 

selected works

Nothing Can Separate Us
2020
This is My Mantra - Tate Britain, London
2016
This is My Mantra - Tate Britain, London
2016
This will be a safe space
2020
Still I Rise - Fort Smith Juvenile Detention Centre, Arkansas
2017
Queen of the Air - Cricklewood Station, UK (Commissioned by Tate)
2019
Basketball Court; Pine Bluff, Arkansas
2020
Lift You Higher - Street Mural - Bowery Wall, New York Commissioned by Goldman Properties
2017
Older, Deeper, Wider, Higher Power - Facebook HQ, London
2017
You’ve Got The Love
2020
Just Passing Through - Downtown, Los Angeles, USA
2018
Together We Stand - Seven Sisters, UK (Commissioned by Tottenham Arts Now), 2018
2018
Raise Your Hopes
2017
Be Bad Until You're Good - Shoreditch, London (Commissioned by Nike Women)
2015
I Remember Paradise - Wynwood, Miami (Commissioned by Wynwood Walls)
2013
Just Passing Through
Lift You Higher
2020

forthcoming exhibitions

7 October 2021 – 30 April 2022

Lakwena Maciver

Back in the Air: A Meditation on Higher Ground

Temple Station's Roof Terrace
(From 17 September 2021)

Lakwena Maciver

Map of Big Love

13 January – 11 February 2022

Lakwena Maciver

Jump paintings

Vigo Gallery

past exhibitions

14 October – 17 October 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Aerial Basket Ball paintings

1 October – 22 October 2021

Ibrahim El-SalahiLakwena MaciverZak Ové

Black Bold British

Curated by Aindrea Emelife

8 July – 30 September 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Nothing Can Separate Us

Covent Garden
10 December 2020 – 9 May 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Homeplace

Hastings Contemporary

selected press/news

Lakwena Maciver

A different perspective: the changing status of Black British art
 
Aerial Basket Ball paintings
14 – 17 October 2021
14 October 2021

Lakwena Maciver

‘Are There Any Left?’: A Sales Frenzy at London’s 1-54 Fair Reflects the Heated Demand for African Contemporary Art
 
Aerial Basket Ball paintings
14 – 17 October 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Why black Art Matters
I was a sceptic, but diversity in art has been wondrous and may be its salvation
 
Back in the Air: A Meditation on Higher Ground
7 October 2021 – 30 April 2022

Lakwena Maciver

Fiorucci And Lakwena Celebrate Their Rousing Collaboration In Colourful Style
 

Lakwena Maciver

Back in the Air, The Artist’s Garden, review: A colourful dose of joy on a forgotten rooftop by the Thames
 
Back in the Air: A Meditation on Higher Ground
7 October 2021 – 30 April 2022

Lakwena Maciver

‘The Artists Garden' with Lakwena 1400sqm Temple Station Roof Terrace Comes to Life
 
Back in the Air: A Meditation on Higher Ground
7 October 2021 – 30 April 2022

Ibrahim El-SalahiLakwena MaciverZak Ové

‘It’s About Black Art Not Being a Sellable Fad’: How One Curator Is Navigating the Market for a Show of Black British Art at Christie’s London
 
Bold Black British
1 – 22 October 2021
20 July 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Artist Lakwena on her new Covent Garden installation
 
Nothing Can Separate Us
8 July – 30 September 2021
8 July 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Covent Garden Installation Revealed
The Daily Telegraph
 
Nothing Can Separate Us
8 July – 30 September 2021
8 July 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Artist Lakwena has brought some colour to Covent Garden
 
Nothing Can Separate Us
8 July – 30 September 2021
8 July 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Lakwena brings her acid-bright, type art to Covent Garden in a takeover of optimism
 
Nothing Can Separate Us
8 July – 30 September 2021
9 April 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Evening Standard Magazine
 
3 February 2021

Lakwena Maciver

LAKWENA ON BELIEF, MYTHOLOGY AND MAKING A STATEMENT
 
31 January 2021

Lakwena Maciver

Lakwena Maciver: Review-Interview Hastings Contemporary
 
Homeplace
10 December 2020 – 9 May 2021
15 December 2020

Lakwena Maciver

Artist Lakwena Transforms Basketball Court Into Colorful Text-Based Work
 
13 December 2020

Lakwena Maciver

Art of the matter: philanthropic initiatives so great you’ll want to frame them
How To Give It in 2020 – and beyond
 
28 August 2020

Lakwena Maciver

Interview with Lakwena Maciver: Message behind the text
Lakwena Maciver is inspired by faith, family heritage, and Black historyy
 
28 January 2015

Lakwena Maciver

The sense of adventure in Lakwena Maciver’s universe
 

Nothing Can Separate Us

2020Acrylic and gold vinyl on wood panel91 x 121 cm / 35 7/8 x 47 5/8 in

This is My Mantra - Tate Britain, London

2016

This is My Mantra - Tate Britain, London

2016

This will be a safe space

2020121.92  x 152.4 cm / 48 x 60 in

Still I Rise - Fort Smith Juvenile Detention Centre, Arkansas

2017

Queen of the Air - Cricklewood Station, UK (Commissioned by Tate)

2019

Basketball Court; Pine Bluff, Arkansas

2020

Lift You Higher - Street Mural - Bowery Wall, New York Commissioned by Goldman Properties

2017Street Mural, Bowery Wall, New York

Older, Deeper, Wider, Higher Power - Facebook HQ, London

2017Leather on ripstop

You’ve Got The Love

2020Acrylic and silver vinyl on wood panel 121.9 x 152.4 x 4 cm / 48 x 60 x 1 5/8 in

Just Passing Through - Downtown, Los Angeles, USA

2018

Together We Stand - Seven Sisters, UK (Commissioned by Tottenham Arts Now), 2018

2018Emulsion on wall1645 x 2450 cm / 647 5/8 x 964 5/8 in

Raise Your Hopes

2017Acrylic on MDF panel152 x 122 cm / 59 7/8 x 48 in

Be Bad Until You're Good - Shoreditch, London (Commissioned by Nike Women)

2015

I Remember Paradise - Wynwood, Miami (Commissioned by Wynwood Walls)

2013

Just Passing Through

Acrylic and gold vinyl on wood panel

Lift You Higher

2020Hand-dyed & stitched cotton applique, sequins, lined with cotton on the reverse 89 x 118 cm / 35 x 46 1/2 in