Dr Justine Wintjes
Justine Wintjes is an archaeologist, art historian and occasional artist. Her main field of interest concerns the intersections between art and archaeology, and art and science more generally. She holds a masters degree in fine art from La Cambre in Brussels, for which she created installations of ceramic, botanical and photographic sculpture dealing with plant domestication and museum collections. She was subsequently awarded a masters degree in archaeological science (archaeobotany) by Leiden University for an analysis of plant remains from an Iron Age site in the Netherlands. Her doctorate at Wits examined the role of copies in the production of rock art knowledge in southern Africa. She considered copies ranging from hand-drawn and painted examples produced from the eighteenth century onwards through to digital images of the twenty-first century. Among her current interests is the exploration of digital imaging for the visualization of archaeological sites in a way that incorporates historical records and copies. To this end she is collaborating with the WSOA Division of Digital Arts to create a 3D model of a collapsed rock shelter in the Drakensberg. She has recently been awarded a Thuthuka grant from the NRF for a three-year project that seeks to recontextualise the documentary and visual materials collected by the German ethnographic expedition to southern Africa lead by Leo Frobenius (1928-30). Dr Wintjes has read papers at numerous international conferences and published a number of articles in peer-reviewed journals.
Citizen Science is defined as “the systematic collection and analysis of data; development of technology; testing of natural phenomena; and the dissemination of these activities by researchers on a primarily avocational basis.”
In early September, Dr Justine Wintjes led a panel session at the annual SAVAH conference in Pietermaritzburg based on the postgraduate course, Writing Art’s Histories.
In early June 2015, postgraduate students in the ‘Writing Art’s Histories’ course accompanied Justine Wintjes, Joni Brenner, Stacey Vorster and Laura de Becker on a writing retreat to an incredible yoga retreat nestled in the rolling hills of the Magaliesburg.
In 2014, Dr Justine Wintjes was awarded a three-year Thuthuka grant by the NRF for her project entitled, Archaeology and Visuality, Imaging as Recording: Returning the Frobenius Archives to the Landscape.
Do objects have lives? If objects could speak, what stories would they tell? Only a very few find their way into museums; some we know much about, others – nothing.” These are some of the questions and issues addressed in Lifelines, which explores the biographies of selected objects in the Standard Bank African Art Collection housed at Wits Art Museum (WAM).