South African Artists



The phrase “New Media Art” is broad and includes any art forms that are created, altered, and disseminated using new media or digital technology. The development of new media was evident, especially during COVID-19, a time when performers and artists were prohibited from publicly selling and performing their work.

Most artists rely on the internet and social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Tik Tok, which is now the fastest-growing social network for business and social purposes. The traditional art form has been replaced by new media art, which is more widely spread internationally.

Pictures that tell a story for Andry Joseph

Andry Joseph, a South African painter who paints using ink, crayons, and linen, prefers selling his portraits on the road or through social media to avoid being taken advantage of by the galleries. In these situations, he can speak with his clients directly and fulfil their requests; he believes every portrait has a backstory. Being unable to perform is one of the reasons that cause most artists to lose their passion for art. As a result, many of these artists have pursued other professions or searched for alternative sources to survive.

The theatre transition from a live audience to an online audience 

Anele Nene

Anele Nene, one of the theatre professionals that has witnessed the current transition stated that he was hesitant to attempt it when the National Art Festival (NAF) asked theatre artists to submit their stories digitally, but he eventually did.

Nene found it challenging because a theatrical performance depends on the audience’s comprehension. Without the audience, there would be no energy exchange that would improve a performer’s performance. He eventually submitted his show online and won a stand-ovation award. Nene still favours conventional theatre over new media in art, “It is a 50/50 proportion if artists put their minds into online platforms, it can also work for them.” he added.


Contemporary to digital dance

According to Noxolo Mbutho, “Dance is different; certain performances are better being short on a live video online while some performances demand a live audience.” Dance is mostly used for entertainment; thus, more people need to learn the newest, most popular dance moves. TikTok and YouTube are available to help individuals to learn new dance moves. Unlike this local dance, contemporary dance is more of a performance that uses choreography to tell a story. Since there is no dialogue, the viewer must pay close attention to every detail, which is hard to achieve when streaming online due to people’s short attention spans.


The traditional methods of performing art are being replaced by new media, which digitalizes it. It allows everyone to express their thoughts and feelings while interacting with others locally, nationally, and internationally. However, artists still prefer traditional methods because they provide a sense of communication and a connection to their audience.

Lungelo Ngongoma


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