Artist – Giggs Kgole

Giggs Kgole was born in Kutupu Village in Limpopo in 1997 and grew up in Tembisa, Johannesburg. In grade six he applied for a scholarship with the Student Sponsorship Program (SSP). From a pool of 3000 applicants, he was one of 25 that won full scholarships to the prestigious St John’s College in Houghton, where he completed high school. He considers this a great achievement for himself and his family, as not only was he the first person to attend a private high school, but the first in his family to reach and pass Matric. His interest in drawing, architecture, film and design began early on. As a small child living in a rural area, he used to run down to the river in the mornings to collect heaps of mud to mould houses and little tractors with which to play. The process of creating makeshift toys and games allowed him to explore his creative talents for the first time. In 2013, he was part of a student exchange program with Glenalmond College in Scotland. His trip opened his eyes to the breadth of the global community, but also allowed him to appreciate his African heritage from a different perspective. It allowed him to realise the extent to which South African stories are untold to the world outside. It instilled within him a desire to tell these stories through his art, conveying the vibrancy and complexity of life in his home country.

In 2016 he was fortunate to be mentored by prominent artist William Kentridge. Kgole says that this has, “allowed me to express myself creatively and has guided me through the workings of this industry.” He appreciates the guidance he has received from prominent artists like Bon Chandiyamba, Blessing Ngobeni and Ayanda Mabulu, yet is intent on staying true to his own identity and style. In 2017, a year after Kgole’s first ever exhibition he received a Presitagous Presidential Scholarship to study in Rome at John Cabot University, where he had his first solo showcase in Europe titled ‘Before the High Walls’ 2018 marks a new feet for Giggs as he became one of Africa’s youngest gallery owners at the age of 21. GasLamp Gallery, located in Johannesburg South Africa is a contemporary art space for creatives all over In 2019 Giggs Kgole will spend six months in France, in an residency organized by Undiscovered Canvas, where he will have 2 solo exhibitions in Cannes and 1 Group exhibition in Paris. September 2019 we will head back to Rome to finish his studies.