Chris Soal


Chris Soal (b. 1994, South Africa) is an award-winning, emerging artist living and practicing in Johannesburg.  Using unconventional found objects, such as toothpicks and bottle caps, in conjunction with concrete and other industrial materials, Soal negotiates structural impacts on urban living and reflects on ecological concerns, while considering the philosophical and psychological notion of the “self.”

Soal’s spatial approach to sculpture reveals a sensitivity to texture, light and form, expressed in an abstract minimalist language. While, conceptually, his works refer to the socio-political context of their making, highlighting the histories embedded in the found material, and utilising them in a way that challenges societal assumptions of value.

In 2017, Soal graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Fine Arts (Hons) at the University of Witwatersrand. He was awarded the PPC Imaginarium Award in 2018, alongside being named the winner of the Sculpture category. He has been awarded residencies by the South African Foundation of Contemporary Art, taking place in Knysna, South Africa, by the RAW Material Company in Dakar, Senegal, and the Residenza Roma by Montoro12 in 2019. His solo exhibition, Field of Vision, was held at WHATIFTHEWORLD in 2019. He has also exhibited in group shows at institutions such as the Iziko National Museum (2020), FRAC MECA, Bordeux (2019), Wits Art Museum (2017) and Stellenbosch University Museum (2018). Recent projects include Soal’s collaboration with Dior on designing two handbags for the fifth edition of the Lady Dior Art Bag. Chris Soal’s work has been included in many notable private and public collections, both locally and internationally.

Click here to view selected works.

Selected Solo Exhibitions

2021 As below so above - WHATIFTHEWORLD, Cape Town
2019 Field of Vision - WHATIFTHEWORLD, Cape Town
TOMORROWS/TODAY, Solo Section at Investec Cape Ton Art Fair, Cape Town
2018 Orbits of Relating, No End Contemporary Art Space, Johannesburg

Selected Group Exhibitions

2021 That Hidden Thread, NIROX Sculpture Park, Johannesburg
2020 Matereality, Iziko National Gallery, Cape Town
2019 Il est une fois à l’Ouest. Frac Nouvelle-Aquitaine MÉCA in Bordeaux, France.
Process - BKhz, Braamfontein. 2019
2018 Germination, RAW Material Company, Partcours festival, Dakar, Senegal
Forward? Forward! Forward..., Stellenbosch University Museum, Stellenbosch
Beyond Troubled Water(s), GONG LAUT: The First Singaraja International Art Forum, Bali, Indonesia
Fresh Voices: Emerging Talent from SA, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, Guns and Rain Gallery, Johannesburg.
2017 NEWWORK 2017, Wits School of Arts Grad Show, Wits Art Museum, Johannesburg.
Washington186 Inaugural Exhibition, Aeroplastics Contemporary, Brussels, Belgium
All the Voices, Fried Contemporary, Pretoria
Wits Young Artist Award Exhibition, The Point of Order, Johannesburg
Taxi Art Foundation Award Top 30 Exhibition, Lizamore and Associates Gallery, Johannesburg
What’s in it for you?, No End Contemporary Art Space, Johannesburg.
2016 undermine – a collaborative group occupation, The Point of Order, Johannesburg
Activate/Captivate: Collections re-engagement, Wits Art Museum, Johannesburg



SEED Award Presented by the Southern African Foundation for Contemporary Art (SAFFCA) – For career acknowledgement.



PPC Imaginarium Award – Overall winner, and winner of the Sculpture category