Aug 03

Ditikeni honors artist: Percyval Madia

Ditikeni honors South Africa’s best and brightest young artists each year, by publishing their art work in our Annual Report. We commissioned the 45-year-old Johannesburg based artist Percyval Madia to deliver artwork for our 2020 Annual Report.


Our team sat down with him to get to know the man behind the art, and asked:

When did your interest in art start?

I started drawing at primary school level, where I got commissions from m樂威壯
y classmates and that continued into high school. When I got to grade 10, I discovered that art is not “only a hobby”, actually it is a field of study. Then I decided that I am going to study Art after I completed my matric. I studied Fine Arts at Funda Community Centre from 1997 till 1999.

Who is your inspiration in the art scene? Your heroes or icons?

Mbongeni Buthelezi and Vusi Mfupi are my inspiration. Mbongeni was my painting teacher when I studied Art at Funda and he imparted a lot of knowledge, techniques and most of all self-confidence in what one does. He left teaching and became a professional full time practising artist that is focused and consistent. I studied Fine Arts at Funda with Vusi, and he went to become an amazing contemporary artist.

How would you describe your work and the themes you are interested in?

‘Strength and positivity’ is the theme I am currently exploring. The idea is based on an experience I had when I was at the back of the queue in a bank. I realised then that I was not concerned about the person in front of me, but rather focused on the person in the front. I decided then that I will approach life like someone at the back of a queue that does not lose focus on the ultimate end goal, which is reaching the front of the line. My work depicts those giants that will always stand strong, irrespective of challenges. No matter how long and slow the queue might be, it still moves forward. Hence I depict figures from the back because they are moving forward.

What has been the highlights of your career?

In 2003, I went to Belgium on a programme called Artists in Schools to learn how artist link with school curriculum while maintaining their individuality in terms of approach and technique. This programme afforded the artist an opportunity to be funded to run a 3 months project of choice in a school. In 2020, I got a commission from Ditikeni to produce artwork that was included in their 2020 Annual Report.

Tell us a bit about the piece you did for Ditikeni? The theme and the message you tried to convey?

The piece I did for the Ditikeni is called “Emerging Giants”, it celebrates the giants that Ditikeni has given strength to, to grow and be sustainable. The figure is depicted from the back to symbolise forwards movement. This is a metaphor that represents years of growth. The cows on the dress of the figure represent the consistent support that Ditikeni has provided over the years to NGOs. The landscape at the bottom of the artwork represent the communities the NGOs come from and operate from. The giants that Ditikeni has enabled emerges from different communities. Through these initiatives, communities learn and spread knowledge about a variety of social issues and some of the social issues are represented on wall of some of the houses in the landscape.

What are your plans for the future?

I am an artist in my own right as well as an Art teacher. I continue to produce artwork as well as teach and share my skills with learners at the school level. Follow me on Facebook


Examples of his work for our Ditikeni Annual report