The staff of the Centre for Curating the Archive (CCA) were devastated to hear of the untimely death of David Brown, one of South Africa’s foremost sculptors. Many of us had come to know David initially through his wife, Pippa Skotnes, but this quiet man with an impossibly rakish head of long wavy hair, made an imprint on each of the CCA staffers, particularly through his work with us in 2015.
We won’t ever be able to pass by his commanding installation on UCT Middle Campus, ‘Dialogue at the Dogwatch’ in quite the same way. Our meetings in the CCA staff room, that showcase a few of his images of the forcibly removed of Harfield Village, will be etched by his traces, a reminder of the important work that he has done and the lives that he has changed. David’s generous contribution to a groundbreaking project on apartheid afterlives reminds us that how we choose to live is as important as the debts we have to pay to our past.
His commitment to doing the right thing, in an astonishingly humble manner, has marked each of us at the CCA in profound ways. That he will be missed is beyond question, as is our support of our colleague, Pippa and their son, Jules.
Image above taken by Ashley Walters at the opening of the Returned to Harfield exhibition