28 February 2021
End Street Studios, August House, Johannesburg


The award aims to shine a light on the top womxn talent in South Africa. Artists from across the country are able to apply for the award. The award is held annually, with only 1 artist being selected


Why is this award important?

According to a 2010 national study on the visual arts, conducted by the Department of Arts and Culture, only 12% of women make a living from creating art in South Africa. Of which, 9% are White and 3% are Black, Colored and Indians combined. The META foundation, the Project Space and End Street Studios are committed to supporting the practice of young, womxn artists. Not only by providing them with space to work from but allowing them to space, time and freedom to explore their work and develop their voices. Through this process, the hope is that they become self-sustaining, full time practising artists who in years to come, change the status quo.


Award Partnerships

End Street Studios, the META foundation and the Project Space have come together to launch this award. End Street Studios was founded by Bronwen Lace in 2016 and when it moved into August House it quickly became a space for womxn artists to practice. The Project Space, which also for a time was located at August House, has always had a strong focus on womxn artists with its founding member Benon Lutaaya working to empower more womxn artists in South Africa and on the continent. The META foundation is acting as the junction between these two partners in making this programme a reality. Based at August House, the META foundation will oversee the day to day running of the residency programme. It is our hope that through such a programme more womxn artists will find their voices and become a sustainable, full time practising artists.


The META foundation, in partnership with the Project Space and End Street Studios is excited to announce the inaugural:



2021 Edition


Annually, one top performing, South African womxn artist will be selected to receive this award. The award provides the artist with the following for a period of 6 months:

  •  Studio space, at End Street Studios, which includes parking, electricity and water and uncapped internet
  •  Opportunity to participate in a group exhibition
  • Opportunity to participate in any August House activities
  •  Solo show with the Project Space
  • Presentation of work at one of the Art Fairs in South Africa as part of the Project Space


2021’s winner of the WOMXM to WATCH award is….


It is with great excitement that we announce the inaugural winner of the 2021 WOMXN TO WATCH award, Zanele Montle.

Zanele’s style speaks to her interest in identity.  At once, one notices that her figures are faceless – faceless portraits of ordinary people. It is as if they posed for their photograph and their faces never developed. Ever since Picasso decided to take the radical step of re-arranging the face, artists have delved into what the face says about the character being portrayed. Faces are usually the first thing we notice in other people. Faces tell us more about a person than any other physical attribute and have always been socially important. More often than not, we evaluate each other from first impressions based largely on facial expressions. In general, faces we find attractive or trustworthy, we bond with; faces we find offensive or deceitful, we avoid. By removing the facial details and making the image a flat one, the artist poses the question – who are these people? What have they been through, and how do they feel? Lacking identity and personality create anonymity. This anonymity provides the viewer with other levels of possibility, one where the viewer can transpose themselves or their loved ones in the artist’s figures. This provides the work with an opportunity to become incredibly personal. The artist says of her work “Through my paintings, I strived to capture the beauty of simple living and the mundane, like sitting with family or my grandmother watching television. I celebrate these moments and acknowledge the sense of community.”