Marcus Neustetter

South Africa

Marcus Neustetter is an artist and cultural activist born in Johannesburg South Africa in 1976. He earned his Masters Degree in Fine Arts (2001) from the University of the Witwatersrand. Neustetter has produced art projects in the gallery, public and virtual domain often at the intersections of art, science and technology ranging from drawing, sculpture, installation, performance, video and multimedia to site-specific and socially engaged interventions. He has exhibited extensively in Europe, Africa and North America. He is the co-director of the contemporary art production collaboration The Trinity Session since 2000 and is currently executive director of ISEA2018 Durban and is developing an Art-Science Research program as an adjunct professor with the Nelson Mandela University.


HD Video, 6’ 20”, silent

The video work Syria shows Syrian artifacts and every day object in the archives of the Weltmuseum in Vienna, Austria. This work is an an extension of the body of work titled Occupy that deals with the artist’s personal reflection on the African continent, its appropriation and the migration of objects and people. With thanks to Dr. Steinmann, Kurator, Weltmuseum Vienna, Neustetter produced and showed his video piece Syria Exploration in Vienna in September 2016. The piece was produced at a time where Viennese media were reporting on stolen Syrian artefacts financing the war through sales on the black market. These black market purchases are said to be happening in the very countries that are refusing war refugees. Neustetter spent time in Vienna filming Syrian objects in historic collections as a way of meditating on this disjointed and disturbing phenomenon. Syria was produced as a response to a Syrian refugee in a recent workshop in Austria expressing that “The West wants our treasures but not our people” and describing the landscape of destruction back home.