Ars Longa: How to turn Cape Town into the art-vertisement capital of the universe

Daily Maverick | Richard Poplak:


As Cape Town scrubs away graffiti, installs rainbow crosswalks and generally reaches peak-twee, RICHARD POPLAK wonders what would happen if the capital of Zilleland properly embraced the lessons learned by Michael Elion’s Mandela-Ray Ban installation, called “Perceived Freedom”.

Last week, the city of Cape Town was gloriously transformed into an outdoor art gallery by the multi talented art-chitect Michael Elion. So muscly and precocious is this playful young Michelangelo-in-the-making that one almost runs out of hyphens/backslashes when conjugating his vast CV.

He has worked alongside leading international superstars like Daniel Libeskind and Pierre Huyghe, both of whom have conspired to make the world a place with more inscrutable glass buildings in which nothing fits. Elion’s own work, which ingeniously incorporates rainbows and hearts and other icons usually found in text messages from teenaged girls, is now beautifying the Mother City, an urban design space previously under assault from graffiti “artists” with no Masters degrees…


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