GIPCA Fellows consider man and the (Cape) environment

By philip
11 March 2013

Two Donald Gordon Creative Arts Fellows consider the real and imagined, with regard to relationships between man and his environment, in the context of the historical Cape. Their works will be presented to the public as part of the 2013 Infecting the City Festival programme which starts today – Monday 11 March!
Award-winning author Henrietta Rose-Innes discusses her work, Green Lion, and reads a few short extracts. This novel, developed during her tenure as Donald Gordon Creative Arts Fellow, explores extinction and the meanings of animal/human encounters, with particular reference to the historical and contemporary Cape. Beginning at a zoo-like institution devoted to recreating an extinct Cape lion, the narrative traces the relationship between a lion-keeper and the rare and elusive animal in his care. There will be opportunity for discussion and questions from the audience after the readings.
Visual artist Michael MacGarry’s period film, As Above, So Below concerns a philosophical re-imaging of Darwin’s brief visit to the Cape of Good Hope. In 1836, following five years at sea around the world aboard The Beagle, British naturalist Charles Darwin visited the Cape of Good Hope. He was 27 years old at the time. The film, shot in black and white, questions what might have ensued had Darwin never left the Cape, had he in fact died there (the result of a vain wager with his valet, and the in-compatibility of his egotism in the face of the infinite); killed by his own invention and ambition. Presented as the culminating project of MacGarry’s Donald Gordon Creative Arts Fellowship, the work is foremost a philosophical play about entropy; the breakdown of rational, ordered systems in isolation.  It focuses on notions around 19th century industrial progress, the absurd, colonial taxonomy, the uncanny and the quixotic nature of humanity; all within the mode of narrative cinema.

Henrietta Rose-Innes’s Green Lion discussion and reading will take place at the District Six Museum’s Homecoming Centre on Tuesday 12 and Thursday 14 March at 18:15

Michael MacGarry’s As above, So Below will be screened at the Festival Centre (6 Spin Street) at 21:45 on the same evenings.

They are presented by The Gordon Institute for Performing and Creative Arts (GIPCA), as part of the 2013 programme for the Infecting the City Public Arts Festival. For more information on the ITC programme see

Posted from Cape Town Green Map