The 2021 WOMXN to WATCH award is proud to present


A solo exhibition by artist, Zanele Montle

2  – 25 October 2021

54 The Valley Road, Parktown North

Zanele Montle is the inaugural winner of the 2021 WOMXN TO WATCH Award.

Participating artists
Zanele Montle

This exhibition seeks to explore concepts of belonging. By its definition belong is a sense of fitting in or feeling like you are an important member of a group. A feeling of belonging describes this sense of truly fitting or meshing. These groups can range from geographic location, to race, to gender, to family and friends. Zanele unpicks this concept through a new body of work that will be presented at this solo exhibition. She says about this body of work “I am  interested in how we relate to the people around us, be it family, people we don’t know or just in society and looking at how different environments play a role in shaping our identity and how these factors influence our sense of belonging”

By presenting individuals either alone or together, as featureless individuals, the artist asks the viewer to see themselves as the characters presented in the work. Through the “blacked out” body, the artist allows for any person of any gender, race or age to see themselves within the context presented. Using clothing the artist unpicks how it too  can also influence our sense of identity and locates the viewer with an everyman experience.

Zanele Montle


Zanele was born and raised in a small town in Empangeni. She and her eight siblings were raised by her single parent. She did her primary schooling in Empangeni Prep and High school in Empangeni High school where she matriculated in 2010 with a distinction in Visual Art. She furthered her studies at the University of Johannesburg and graduated for her National Diploma in Visual Art then completed her BTech at Tshwane University of Technology. In 2015, her work was selected in the Thami Mnyele Art Awards to appear in their top 100 exhibition. In 2017 she was a gallery manager at the Hazard Gallery. She has a Post Graduate qualification in art education and is currently working as an art educator and a painter.