Community Projects

Land Art PassportProgrammes • Community • Timetable

Community projects are an important aspect of Site_Specific's mandate to share and cross-pollinate on knowledge, experience, skills, and networks. Relevant land art mentorship programmes, collaborative art work opportunities, and an influx of national & international art experience provide participants with the insight to enter the local art & tourism industry. These exchange experiences benefit local communities, as well as visiting artists.

Erica Lüttich has been with Site_Specific since it's inception in 2011, participating as a community projects co-ordinator and visual artist. This year she is joined by collaborative theatre and physical performance artist Janine Lewis, and Bryan Hansen – an experienced youth leadership workshop facilitator. Participating communities of the Bitou area include Kwanokuthula, New Horizons, Qolweni, Kurland, Harkerville and Kranshoek. Site_Specific is also pleased to welcome LunchBox Theatre who are collaborating on the site-specific performance.

Youth Mentorship Programme / 3 & 4 August 2013

Facilitator: Bryan Hansen (youth leadership workshop facilitator)

As an ongoing and sustained venture, Site_Specific engages youth artists from local communities in the lead up to the 2013 Land Art Biennale and thereafter. The overall aim is to provide aspiring youth with deeper insights into land art as a means of facilitating personal growth skills – enabling them to participate in and appreciate their communities, and their surrounding environment. Site_Specific thanks Ingwe Forest Adventures and Bryan Hansen for their generous contributions to this venture. A total of eighteen participants took part from seven different communities around the Plettenberg Bay area. Bryan has also started a facebook community page for participants called Plettenberg Bay Community Artists Association.

Plettenberg Bay Community Artists Association (facebook)

Running Fences Project / 10 - 17 August 2013

Facilitator: Erica Lüttich (visual artist & community projects co-ordinator)

This project was started during Erica's residency programme earlier in the year. Over the course of three weeks Erica connected with local communities and activated them in crafting sections of fence out of Black Wattle saplings, an invasive exotic tree species originally from Australia. The completed sections of fence will be installed in the lagoon in front of the Beacon Island Resort by  these communities as part of a land art work called 'Running Fences' during the August event – addressing the contentious issue of land ownership and the devastating impact and implications of fences.

This project will link with Bryan Hansen's mentorship programme to set up the debate and initiate discussion.

The 'Human Fence' ceremony brought all participating Bitou communities together to create a human fence during Erica Lüttich's 'Running Fences' art residency earlier this year.

The 'Human Fence' ceremony brought all participating Bitou communities together to create a human fence during Erica Lüttich's 'Running Fences' art residency earlier this year.

- Running Fences Artists' Residency facebook event
- 'Human Fences' doccie

The Mermaid Project / 10 - 17 August 2013

Facilitators: Lien Roman (special needs educator) & Erica Lüttich

Mami Wata

'Mami Wata' was created with Lien Roman and the 'Women on the Move' project in Plettenberg Bay in 2003. The project was facilitated by visual art lecturers from the University of South Africa (Unisa). This mermaid was washed away in a flood three years later. Site_Specific hopes to resurrect her as part of the 2013 Land Art Biennale community projects programme.

In 2003 a Unisa land art initiative resulted in the crafting of a mermaid with Black Wattle, one of the world's most invasive and water-hungry exotic tree species that requires constant clearing in the Bitou area. For three years Kurland's 'Women on the Move' community project lay in front of the 'Mermaid's Slipper' Restaurant on one of the reed islands in the Bitou River, until a storm washed her away. Despite her absence, the mermaid was still a much talked about land art work, and Lien Roman and her team of original mermaid makers are keen to re-create her for Site_Specific's 2013 Land Art Biennale this August. Joining them is The Group of Hope Project of Kurland who also participated in Site_Specific's 2011 event.

The Boitumelo Project

Outreach Foundation, Hillbrow, Johannesburg

Facilitator: Naledzani Matshinge

Under the creative guidence of Erica Lüttich, the Boitumelo Project team joins Site_Specific in Plettenberg Bay to facilitate and enact various community and art projects such as 'Running Fences' and 'Mermaid'. Besides Erica, Boitumelo's team consists of John Dlamini (logistics), Vusi 'Vrega' Tshawe (videographer, performer), Mokhema 'Queen' Hlanganani (crafter & performer), and Thandekile Mke (student). Following through on connections established during the 2011 event and Erica's artist residency, Boitumelo are facilitating workshops and land art installations with the Kurland, New Horizons, Harkerville, Kwanokuthula, Kranshoek, and Qolweni communities. Boitumelo and Erica are also participating as artists, enacting various land art installations and performances of their own. Boitumelo's facilitator, Naledzani Matshinge, was with us in 2011, but she could not join us this time around although she is keeping a close eye on matters as they unfold in Plett.

The Boitumelo Project offers training in arts and craft skills to facilitate social change within the context of Hillbrow, a suburb in Johannesburg. By introducing skills such as basic sewing, product development, pricing and costing, and elementary business skills, it has offered free courses to any person needing a space to develop creatively. In 2001 it began as a sewing project with twelves students in Hillbrow, and has since grown to 128 students in 2012, extending it's craft practices beyond sewing.

- follow #BoitumeloProject

Schools Programme / 16 August 2013

Friday, 10h00 - 14h00

Artists will be completing their land art works by Friday the 16th of August, and are available on site between 10h00 and 14h00 at their respective land art installations to speak about their work, and answer questions.

Schools of the BITOU region are invited to bring their learners on a walkabout of the forty plus artists' installations to learn about land art, the artistic process, and to meet prominent international and South African artists.

Learners are encouraged to do some research ahead of time, and to come prepared with questions for the respective artists.

Artists lists & short bios
- Invited Artists
- Selected_SIDES Artists
2011 event catalogue (5,2 MBs)
- Site_Specific International Land Art Biennale 2011 Catalogue.PDF
Further reading
- 2013 press page
- 2011 press page

Image Theatre Performance Project / 17 August 2013

Sula inyembezi (wipe your tears)

Saturday, 12h00, The Old Dairy, Skosana street, Kwanokuthula

Facilitators: Janine Lewis (physical performance artist & educator) and Melodie Schoeman (performance artist & project manager) of SEITY in collaboration with LunchBox Theatre.

The Bitou Brothers Acapella Choir and young adults from the Kwanokuthula township community near Plettenberg Bay will participate in an interactive performance at the Old Dairy situated at the township's entrance. The dilapidated building and its' surrounding concrete slabs provide an austere contrast to the earthy veld and natural surroundings. Workshops in Image Theatre will set up a collaboratively generated performance piece that will be part of Site_Specific's 2013 Land Art event programme. Once again this project will interface with Bryan Hansen's youth mentorship programme.

This is part of the SEITY performance company's outreach programme. SEITY means ‘with something peculiar to one self’ and is a performance company formed by Janine Lewis and Melodie Schoeman in 2005 that strives to present original exciting collaborative performances. LunchBox Theatre is a local community performance organisation that focuses on social upliftment and environmental awareness amongst the youth.