It has been with us as long as we have existed. Known as the worst of all human emotions. The Green Monster. One of the Deadly Sins. Art is no stranger to envy, either as the subject or as being the cause of it. Nel focuses light on Envy.

It has never been as visible and every day as it currently stands. With the increasing bandwidth it receives via platforms like Instagram, envy enters our lives daily.

Cain and Abel, the first biblical instance of envy, which leads Cain to murder his brother. When confronted by God and asked where his brother is, Cain answers with a question:

Am I my brother’s keeper?

The lies, the deception, the corruption, it all starts here, with envy.

An instant test: This second, go to a social media account of anybody celebrated or iconic, one that has public responses posted below the article, there in between the hearts and kisses you will find the hate ray. Not lurking, most probably masquerading, as critique or offense. Do not be fooled. It is what it is.

John-Michael Metelerkamp. Untitled 1. 2021. for Envy


Join Nel Gallery, at 117 Long Street, from the 2nd of September for Envy, a group exhibition of selected artists who have either addressed the topic directly or who have had work selected to be on the exhibition.

This will be the introductory exhibition, and a physical manifestation of the curation, which will also be shown on social media and art platforms. In time this will be followed by a second and possibly third edition, exclusively on Artsy, the online art platform.

Olaf Bisschoff. Untitled. 40x50cm. Oil on canvas. 2021

The exhibition in the gallery finishes on the 14th of October.


Participating artists include:

Navel Seakamela, Asha Zero, John-Michael Metelerkamp, Luxolo Witvoet, Cheryl Traub-Adler, Mary Holland, StJohn Fuller, Brett Charles Seiler, Kelly Johnson, Hentie Van Der Merwe, Sue Pam-Grant, Olaf Bisschoff, Ella Cronje, Wandie Mesatywa, Oupa Sibeko, Wilhelm Saayman, amongst others.

Navel Seakamela. Untitled. 77x88cm. Charcoal, acrylic, oil paint on canvas. 2021

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