Artscape officially opened its doors , 6 November 2020, for patrons with a remarkable piece of art by acclaimed artist Lizette Chirrime.

On Friday the 6th of November, the Dress of Grateful Men was revealed at Artscape as part of the International Conference called Build Peace, in partnership with The Bertha Centre.

Khensa Khancu wa Vavanuna (The Dress of Grateful Men) is a unique interactive art project that invited men from across Cape Town to co-create a dress with fabric artist Lizette Chirrime in honour of women.

Twenty-seven men each stitched a personal message to women in their lives on a piece of fabric, which Lizette then joined together into a full dress. Our hope is that the dress will spark a deeper reflection around gender and the gendered nature of peacebuilding.

The work by Lizette Chirrime critically engages with society on becoming active citizens, to stop gender based violence and to emphasize that the lives of Persons with Disabilities do matter.

Marlene Le Roux, Artscape CEO:  “This striking work of art is as an expressions of gratitude towards women, to engage in a conversation on various forms of masculinity. Some men are chauvinists, some men do cry. Gender equality is about actions, working towards a society that practice humanity on all levels”.

Artist, Lizette Chirrime (Centre) with some of the 27 men who contributed in the making of the dress.

Meanwhile, the journey of the dress continues…although the dress has been created, there is no final completion date, because there is no limit to how long the dress can be. Now men from around the world are invited to contribute.

Lizette will extend the length of the dress to accommodate however many more stitched messages she receives. If your answer is ‘yes’ to any of the following questions, we think you’ll enjoy taking part in this artistic experiment…

-Do you take joy in breaking gender stereotypes?

-Do you feel gratitude for women’s contributions to your life & the world?

-Do you want to help transform how manhood is defined by society? -Are you helping to nurture a society free of violence and discrimination against women?

-Do you honor the feminine side of yourself? No prior stitching experience is required, although we encourage men who have experience to join as well.

All that’s needed are willing hands and an open heart. See this PDF invitation for more details:

The dress will be on display until the end of November in the Artscape Marble Foyer while images thereof can be viewed on the Artscape website and social media platforms.