There is no shortage of young talented artists across the country and we’re fortunate enough to have some exciting galleries to act as a platform for them. With the weather warming and the days getting longer, what better way is there to end a day than at one of these world class galleries? If you’re unsure of where to start or what to see, here are our pick of 5 local art exhibitions you need to see ASAP.

Dale Lawrence’s ‘Another Helping’ at SMITH Studio (CT)

Lawrence is back with his second solo show at the acclaimed Smith Studio. ‘Another Helping’, which runs until the 17th of November, is a tongue-in-cheek expression of how an artist’s work is received, highlighting the pressure to produce identical work to prior pieces while still remaining fresh and original. The works are striking, mostly oil on canvas, and you will lose yourself their detailed simplicity. 

Zanele Muholi’s ‘Faces and Phases’ at The Curatorial Lab at Zeitz MOCAA (CT)

As the inaugural project for the experimental space at the already-popular Zeitz MOCAA, Faces and Phases is a collection of portraits of the faces of the LGBTQI+ community and gives a first hand account of their experiences of oppression and abuse. The powerful local art exhibition aims to spark the conversation about the heteronormative South African society as well as its view of sexuality and gender stereotypes. The exhibition is on now and will run until June 2018.

Today's 1pm (15 min) lunch-time tour will focus on @MuholiZanele's 'Faces & Phases' series. These works are not merely black and white portraits, but an intimate portrayal of lives that have been traditionally marginalised. The individuals confronting us have collectively experienced the horrors of homophobia, violence, rape and murder. Still, they stand proud of who they are and claim their right to be visible. In a society that fails to take responsibility for the vulnerability of the LGBTQI+ community and the threat of their erasure, these portraits and their unyielding gaze commands respect for their humanity and speaks out against the silence of their violation. Muholi’s images confront injustice, celebrate the existence of gay African individuals and refuse to allow the myth that they are invisible to the eye of history. #ZeitzMOCAALunchtimeTours #ZeitzMOCAA

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Stephen Cohen’s ‘Put Your Heart Under Your Feet … And Walk!’ at The Stevenson Gallery (JHB)

This harrowing exhibition tells the heart-breaking experience of the artist, who suddenly and tragically lost his partner Elu, a well-know dancer and artist. The pieces are a mix of sculptural objects as well as a projection, and are so emotionally-charged and raw that you will feel as if you knew and loved Elu. This local art exhibition ends on the 17th of November, so be sure to make time for it before it finishes.

John Murray’s ‘Aftermath’ at WHATIFTHEWORLD (JHB)

Inspired by the bustling and dynamic chaos of navigating life as a young artist in a post-Apartheid society. Staying true to his acrylic roots, ‘Aftermath’ is an exciting collection made up of deep layers of paint that ultimately result in an emotive marriage between the organic and the industrial. As a representation of forming part of a society that is both in reform and rebirth, the works tell a story of a bright future emerging from a dark past. It opened on the 2nd of November and will end on the 16th of December.

Gideon Mendel’s ‘Drowning World’ at WITS Art Museum (JHB)

As an almost juxtaposition to the state of water affairs in the Western Cape, this contemporary and thought-provoking series of photographs by South African-born Mendel highlights the effects of global warming across various countries. Something of a cross between art and a social commentary, the affronting images force you to acknowledge that global warming is here and will be something we need to deal with going forward.