Artist and educator

About Michael

Born in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, Michael Barry is a practising artist and art educator. Having completed his schooling in Port Elizabeth, he moved to Cape Town in 1976 to complete his Fine Arts honours degree.

Michael currently heads up the Department of Arts and Culture at Nelson Mandela University and is involved in numerous cultural development projects around Port Elizabeth. Read more

His work

Michael has participated in various art exhibitions, locally, nationally and internationally. One of his highlights is when he exhibited with George Pemba during the Imvaba and George Pemba exhibition.

He is committed to the development of local art, with recent installations ‘Arts heritage’ of his community; an exhibition to honour those intangible ‘heritages’ that reflect the common collective spirituality of his community.

Michael’s work ranges from portraits of musicians, to religious symbols, to interpretations of the spiritual consciousness of the community.

“The artist plays a major role in interpreting how society perceives itself both individually and collectively”

Public art commissions

Interested in Michael's work?

Call: 082 362 5201

Education and qualifications

Michael attended the University of Cape Town and completed his Fine Art degree with honours at UCT's prestigious Michaelis fine art school.

  • 1985

    Higher Degree in Education


    He completed his Higher Degree in Education at UCT. A year later he took up a job of teaching art at St Thomas Secondary school, Port Elizabeth.

  • 2004-2007

    Project Manager


    During this time he was the Project Manager for Create SA Project supporting the entrepreneurial development for craft practitioners in Gauteng, Eastern Cape, Free State and the Northern Cape.
    Michael was also the Eastern Cape Coordinator for the Sunday times 100 year heritage project.

  • 2012

    Master's Degree


    Michael completed his Master’s degree at Mandela University (NMU), and has held leading positions at different art related institutions and worked previously as a secondary school art teacher.

Get in touch

Interested in Michael's work?

Call: 082 362 5201