Artist: William Kentridge (South African, born Johannesburg, 1955)
Dimensions: 65 1/2 x 38 3/8 in. (166.4 x 97.5 cm)
Credit Line: Purchase, Reba and Dave Williams Gift, 2001
Accession Number: 2001.602
Rights and Reproduction: © William Kentridge
Casspir is the anagrammed name for the armored personal carriers the South African Police (SAP) and Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) developed in the 1980s for use in conflict zones and the forceful patrol of black townships. The jumble of heads stacked at center derives from sketches Kentridge made in 1988 of Giotto’s early 14th-century frescoes in the Church of Santa Croce in Florence, which he combined here with his memories of sculptor Tony Cragg’s installation of a pile of portrait-like bronze casts of carved beetroots for the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale that same year.