20 March – 30 April 2019


The project is an exploration of the uncanny valley separating the visceral experience and the unbridled expression of our innermost fears and desires. Using an AI-assisted painterly approach in combination with digital photography the artist shines light upon the archetypal twins of the psyche, dancing on the edge of the raging chaos while moving gently to the tune of the tamed and civilized mind.

Each canvas shatters a dark mirror of restrain and breaks the window wide open into the wilderness of each subject’s soul, bringing it out of the shadow and onto the surface – a self-portrait of the Unconscious.

“Looking at these pictures for a moment, they take me on a journey into the deepest darkest parts of my psyche. The place where all the pain, anguish and dark thoughts, has at some point resided, the childhood bullies, the manipulators, the abusers, the people who willfully harmed for their own gain, my own dark desires, which at times more fearful than living perpetrators. My voice roars, standing tall, upright and strong…As my roar ends, my eyes find the woman, light, pure, full of love and I’m reminded as always, that no matter how far I travel down into the madness, that there is always a chink in the darkness where life shines in; and I know with every fiber of my being, that love always wins, me a human filled with unfathomable love.. Equilibrium is restored”  

Behind the curtains of perfection

In his new body of work, ‘Skin Deep’, the artist and visual activist will once again challenge audiences to re-evaluate what they perceive as beautiful. The work will delve into the darker side of the psyche, away from perfection. The artist has explored the discourse of perfection in his work shown at the GUS Gallery in Stellenbosch in February entitled ‘Intimate Loneliness: Sex with things’ whereby his pictures highlighted the extreme loneliness and alienation brought about by our digital personas linked wholly to a “fake perfection.” In his current series ‘Skin Deep’ he wants to steer away from perfection and coax his audience to consider a view that is everything but perfect. The works are deliberately manipulated to show imperfection.

Skin Deep is a departure from his previous body of work titled Intimate Loneliness: Sex with things as the artist is exploring the darker side to identity. In that body of work, he uses photographs of mannequins as symbolism of the world we currently live in, emphasising a disconnect from reality. Their exterior representing a fake perfection of what women and men think they should look like, flawless with perfect smiles living perfect lives we misleadingly portray on social media. He says we can all take the perfect selfie, show the world we are social beings, out having fun in trendy places, living the dream, but asks the question; are we truly happy?

The new work aims at stripping yet another layer, to the core which is our distorted image of ourselves.

After two very successful exhibitions in Stellenbosch and Cape Town, the visionary artist returns to Johannesburg. Last year saw SaySay share his visual activism with Johannesburg audiences in his show entitled ‘The Gift of Water.’ The Gift of Water was a project focused on bringing attention to the plight of the Western Cape and the drought that seriously threatened the region.

The show will run at the Agog Gallery in Braamfontein from the 20th of March to the 30th of April.
The opening night will feature the trailblazing internationally acclaimed, Moving Into Dance Mopatong Dance Company (MID) and traininc organisation which has produced award winning dancers, choreographers, arts administrators, and teachers. 

For more information about MID visit their website at

Artist’s Prints now available

If you are interested in acquiring exhibited artwork, please contact our representative at the gallery or visit our online shop

More about SaySay.Love

Saysay.Love is a visual activist who spends his time between Cape Town and Berlin. He has made a name for himself with the series entitled the ‘Gift of Water’ which brought attention to the water crises facing the Western Cape in 2018 and will see him present a new body of work in 2019 touching on themes such as “Faked Perfection”, “intimate loneliness” and “Sex with Things”

SaySay.Love shares his unique way of seeing the world through the work he creates. Born with an optical disability that affects his ability to see the world three-dimensionally, SaySay.Love has a different perspective which comes across in his suggestive and provocative work.

His photography is layered with symbolism and based on his emotional experiences and reflections on the social issues. SaySay.Love is passionate about education and the role it plays in social change, supporting a number of charities with the proceeds of his work.

In the Media

March 19, 2019 / ‘Skin Deep’ at ONe11 Gallery, South Africa

Interview with SaySay Love and Aniek Nieuwenhuis discussing their work on the project.

March 8, 2019 / SABC3 Afternoon Express, SOUTH AFRICA

Interview with SaySay Love discussing his life, art and creative process.

February 7, 2019 / SABC News Morning Show, SOUTH AFRICA

Full version of the interview with SaySay Love discussing his new artwork and collaboration on the exhibition “SKIN DEEP”

“Two fine artists from Cape Town have collaborated to showcase works that challenge perceptions of beauty. Next week, they will host an exhibition entitled ‘Skin Deep’ which explores the distorted image of human beings taking a journey through fear and pain. The exhibition will run until the 9th of March 2019.”

February 13, 2019 / pARTicipate’s Bruce Dennill Interview on ‘SKIN DEEP’ Exhibition

Skin Deep, Or Fleshing Out A Philosophy

“In terms of the viewing of art: do you think that culture plays a role in how we perceive art? Or is there more of a collective consciousness at play or both? For instance, does the reaction between your German and South African art lovers differ?

I think that culture and society does play a role in the way that art is perceived. I feel that the art scene in Europe is perhaps more politicised and dealing with social issues relating to that society whereas here in SA its rawer and more organic. But also, if we speak in general terms about art appreciation, there is always certainly a subjective viewpoint. I doubt whether any two people will look at a picture in the same way. We are all looking from our own perspective, even though it is influenced by the collective. This is something that really excites me about art. We are all artists really.”


Art Interview: Skin Deep, Or Fleshing Out A Philosophy – pARTicipate


 Maboneng is the home of many artist and far too few galleries. This has changed with the arrival of the Agog Gallery. The Agog Gallery is a unique art gallery where we believe that the meaning of art is also the meaning of the artist. The gallery is dedicated to the promotion of national and international artists and to connecting artists with collectors while providing a venue of high quality original fine art to accommodate every budget.
Agog Gallery
12 Lower Ross Street
Maboneng, Johannesburg
2094 South Africa