Wayne Barker is a shrewd critic of the times, recognised for making incisive and astute social and political commentaries. Growing up within the Valhalla military air base in Pretoria’s outlying suburbs, Barker spent his formative years amidst a hotbed of apartheid military activity – worthwhile to consider in respect of his notorious aversion toward authority.
Today Barker has participated in various group and solo exhibitions across South Africa and France, which include among others, Super Boring, conceived at three locations: Stellenbosch Modern And Contemporary Art Gallery (SMAC Gallery) in Cape Town, in 2010; Polokwane Art Museum, in Polokwane, South Africa, in 2010; and the Standard Bank Gallery in Johannesburg, in 2011.
His 2015 exhibition at CIRCA Gallery in Johannesburg proved a defining moment for his artistic career. Normal Man presented a body of large-scale, mixed media oil paintings, whereby found objects and neon text emerge from the textural surface of his canvases. In a contemporary nod to Dadaist tendencies, the works pay tribute to influential figures and relics of mass culture.