Taxis and art: Rethinking ‘Cape Malay’ and ‘Coloured’ identity

Artist Thania Petersen has embarked on a project to bring art into minibus taxis. As a pilot for the project, she covered a taxi in artwork that interrogates the construction of ‘Cape Malay’ and ‘Coloured’ identity and proposes a way forward.

Since the beginning of May 2021, one particular minibus taxi that traverses the route between Hanover Park and the Cape Town city centre has been covered in artwork by Cape Town-based artist Thania Petersen. The 40-year-old artist’s work has been collected and exhibited widely, from the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in Cape Town to the World Cultures Museum Rotterdam in the Netherlands to the Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC, through to Brazil’s Oscar Niemeyer Museum Curitiba, to name a few.