Mook Lion

Site Specific Street Art with the audience in mind

Photo by : Samora Chapman

Cultural Murals and Street Art

Painting this mural was a marathon! 378m2 of corrugated iron at the AC Whitcher saw mill in the Tsitsikamma with the life master Tyran Roy. We depicted a herd of knysna elephants passing through a clearing in the jungle. 2021.
Extenda pole painting on Pine Town line
Street portraits of Vuyo and Luvo in their section. Makhanda, Eastern Cape 2020.
The Kloof frog is an athletic little amphibian, an excellent swimmer and jumper with large disks on its fingers and toes which allow it to defy gravity when it climbs vertical slippery surfaces, like the damp underside of a waterfall. Alarmingly, the Kloof frog is endangered with only around 500km2 of its natural habitat left, including the Krantzkloof nature reserve, just down the road from this mural.
‘Sesfikile’ featuring the powerful Zolani Mahola flying bravely into the future. Outside the Flame Studio and the historic Constitution Hill precinct in Hillbrow, Jozi. 2020. A massive shout out to the Spier Arts Trust for this amazing opportunity.
The writing is on the wall and the disembodied hand. A collaboration with the talented Luke MacDonald including a new poem each week. Durban 2020.
Remember Marikana, Durban 2015.
‘Still Free’ I painted this mural shortly after malicious damages to property charges against me were withdrawn. Durban 2012.
Linocut technique explored in the mural format.
One day the donkeys of Makhanda gathered, from Hlalani to Sunnyside, and moved through the streets like a swarm of bees, full of conviction. My contribution to the ‘Nature is Louder’ mural festival for the National Arts Festival, 2021.

Footnotes in the City – Durban Street Art Documentary.

Footnotes in the City is a documentary style video piece which is the culmination of the practical component of my master’s study in fine art at the Durban University of technology. The title of my study is: Street Art and Mural Art as Visual Activism in Durban: 2014 – 2017. The film is shot by the intrepid Durban photographer and film- maker Samora Chapman.

The film serves the purpose of documenting and presenting activist or critical street art and mural art in Durban from 2014 – 2017 and asks the question; what is the function of this art form. The film explores the opinions of: experts within the films area of interest, practicing street and mural artists and selected members of the public. The film presents street art and mural art as an effective and pragmatic cultural response to social, political and environmental climate of post – apartheid Durban. This kind of critical cultural expression is ephemeral due to the ever changing and competitive nature of the public space, which makes this  documentation very important as the only lasting evidence.

Cultural and Commercial Murals

Creative Blocks – For Spier Arts Trust


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About Me

Mook Lion has just completed his Masters in fine art at the Durban University of Technology. He investigated street art and mural art as visual activism in Durban: 2014-2017. His practice based research aimed at producing site specific and socially conscious artwork in the public domain.  Theoretical and historical research as well as primary information gathered through interviews with members of the public, informs his art practice.

Mook Lion became invested in this form of cultural expression through participating in Hip Hop culture in Durban from the mid- 2000s focusing on graffiti. Through this culture he developed an interest in exploring and actively participating in Durban, his city of residence. He was charged for malicious damage to property on two occasions as a result of this active often unsanctioned use of public space through graffiti. Through institutional education at Durban University of technology he began attempting to combine academic fine art and graffiti which lead him to this area of interest. Currently, he often works collaboratively with experienced artists and community members, aiming to make art which performs a social and cultural function by beautifying or repurposing wasted space and communicating with the public around social injustices and the importance of nature preservation.

Why do you do what you do? How did you get started in your field?

What have you done so far? What were the major milestones in your career?

What do you do after work? What are your passions and hobbies? What do you most enjoy talking about?


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Flat 2 Craigleur Building
2 Cawood Street
Mkhanda
Eastern Cape
South Africa