Photography by Jamal Nxedlana

Artvillain is cementing his path to success

Having reached remarkable heights in his career, Artvillain began practising photography at the age of 14 when he received his first digital camera. He has worked with the likes of Riky Rick, J. Molley, Lethabo Acid, Jazzi Disciples and Slikour at only 20 years of age. The Johannesburg based creative describes himself as a contemporary digital artist who started cementing his path into creativity in school when he took art.

He explains the beginning of his working relationship with Riky Rick as follows: “Initially he had contacted me after I took quite a few photos of him at a show and I had tagged him referring to Cotton Fest. Instagram DMs yeah, that’s how it started and he actually liked my stuff. He offered credentials for Cotton Fest. After that he had hit me up for separate work.”

Artvillain enjoys shooting fashion and explains that scouting models forms an integral part of his process. “The model has to represent the aesthetic,” he shares. Not limiting himself to working with specific kinds of models he rather lets the garments aid in his decisions for casting.

Talking to his own generation and their rapid rise in the art scene at such a young age Artvillain explains that due to the myriad of influences online, young people of his age have been pushed to “perfect their craft”. With influences taken from both local and international photographers, Artvillain lists his early influences to get into the game as Blacksmith, Everyday People Stories and Another Black Artist.

With a goal of representing South Africa, keeping to traditions and being an ambassador for the culture internationally, Artvillain hopes to one day shoot covers for Vogue, work with i-D and GQ among others.

Artvillain is one of the spotlighted artists for the Miller Genuine Draft Art and Design series.

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