How Abra-Cadaver saved the Wicked Cat

Art portfolio- my work

Once upon a time (round-a-bout 2016), in Stellenbosch, South Africa; Abra-Cadaver the Stink Afrikaner:

Abra-Cadaver-Stink Afrikaner 2016- exhibited during the Woordfees in Stellenbosch (destroyed)

was waiting and thinking, until “Minutes to Midnight” in 2018:

Minutes to midnight 2018 (destroyed)

meanwhile- “it is hard to take a nap with a dragon on your lap”.

“It is hard to take a nap with a dragon on your lap 2021 Photographic print on canvas, thread and rubber (destroyed)

which of course did not work out, but luckily today, the cat can finally say to Abra-Cadaver:

“Thank you for saving my life, said the wicked cat” 2022 Photographic print on board, thread and rubber

Thank you for saving my life said the wicked cat 2022 Photographic print on board, thread, doillies and rubber 122 x 85 cm framed

The end.

Before the year was over a great joy was announced.

Art portfolio- my work
Hannalie Taute Before the year was over a great joy was announced 84 X 119 cm Photographic print on board, thread and rubber 2021

I was working on this piece before and during COP 26 (from late Oct to early Nov2021), and that’s why I decided to let one of the “family-members” hold on to the globe.

 The working title of my upcoming solo in July 2022 was after all “family meeting”.

Masked (with traditional masks because it is after all during a pandemic) world leaders’ (all female) and one (which is coincidentally my real life biological mother- because this specific photo is from my own family archive) masked ‘leader’

(my mother was the ‘Korfbal’ captain that year).

 And while on the subject of sport, my son is going to play his first ever hockey match today!  ‘-)

Anyway, I posted this on social media

with the hashtag #wishfulthinking because by then (sad to say) COP26 looked more like an elaborate PR event rather than leaders taking action and there was no ‘great joy’ announced.

Yesterday it was EARTHDAY 2022, and this is the 52nd anniversary of Earth day.

Here is a link to a short summery of how it was decided that 22 April should be ‘celebrated’* and coordinated by

in the same article it mentions that this year’s theme is “invest in our planet’.

“Kathleen Rogers, President of talks about transformative shift in the global economy.”   Still I don’t see any concrete plans being made, she also adds: “ The solutions are out there and we know what must be done…” (so why not do it?) “… whether it’s transitioning to renewable energy, conserving our forests and lands, or ridding ourselves of the scourge of plastic pollution.” – (again the words- transitioning…meanwhile:

Let’s wait and see how the story continues…

playing with fire – detail

*footnote: To celebrate something is to acknowledge a significant happy day or event, and I have to agree with Greta Thunberg that it doesn’t feel very ‘happy’:

Except that I am still able to be living on this wonderful planet that will surely survive us all and filled with gratitude because of that!

Alienated from her family – detail

Last but not least my solo exhibition opens at Mcontemporary in 3months time and I am super excited. Feel free to register your interest with the gallery or join the waiting list! Here

The donkeys grew ears

Art portfolio- my work
The donkeys grew ears, 2022, Photographic print on board, thread and rubber 87 x 122 cm framed

I love doing research on donkeys. Donkeys are so rich in symbolism for eg: In the fables of Aesop where donkeys are generally portrayed as stupid and stubborn, to Christianity where the donkey is a symbol of service, suffering, peace and humility. Shakespeare popularized the word Ass, and in Pinocchio there was a section where the coachman and his henchmen turned boys into donkeys.  In the great myth Midas was given the ears of a donkey.

But today I would like to share the proposed dilemma by the Philosopher Jean Buridan (1300-1358) in which a hypothetical donkey suffering from hunger and thirst finds itself halfway between a bucket of fresh water and enjoyable bales of hay.  This makes the donkey perplexed, as it does not know whether to quench its thirst or appease its hunger later or vice versa.  Its indecisiveness leads to its perish.  This allegory could be taken as the cost of human inaction or as the total lack of free will versus determination in human life.” (A Merrifield (2018. The wisdom of Donkeys.  Finding tranquillity in a chaotic world.)

I feel that the above dilemma is perfect for the times we live in. 

But what does having donkey ears mean?  It means an exceptionally long period of time – the phrase likely originated as rhyming slang ears vs years. But having big ears can also mean to be nosy and to listen to other people’s private conversations.

Also did you know that if a donkey does not feel like you’ve alleviated their discomfort, they may escalate their body language to include rapidly swiveling ears which is usually a sign of high anxiety or alertness.

With that said, this work is currently on view at The Gallery Grande Provence for the “True Fall” group exhibition.  I thought it might be fitting since donkeys have that ‘true fall palette” but it also reminded me of the Fall of man (the transition of the first man and woman from a state of innocent obedience to a state of guilty disobedience.

The end.

The story behind….

Art portfolio- my work


Hannalie Taute
Title: To view the world through rose coloured glasses (a fiber optical illusion)
Medium: Photographic print on board, pastel, ink, thread and rubber
Size: 120.5 x 85,5 cm

When my mother-in-law saw a photo of this work she said to me that she doesn’t know who this is, but she likes it. I replied that if she doesn’t know, I don’t’ either because she gave me a couple of family photos to work with and he was among them.  Maybe it would probably be best if I document the original story of each original photo I receive for future reference 😉

The original photograph

With that said, the ‘new’ story of this specific work is that it was created in a time with the world in turmoil.

So sometimes I just want to look at the world through rose coloured glasses (a phrase which stuck in my mind and it means to take an optimistic view of the world)

I also found some lovely rose coloured thread and couldn’t wait to use it.  Stitching roses was the perfect opportunity. 

While I was busy with this piece I received an invite to participate in an exhibition with the theme: “rich in fiber”.  Whenever I think of fiber, I think of thread. I also think of fiber optics. What a spectacle 😉 And so Bob’s your uncle!

P.S this was also the first time I hand-coloured the background like they use to do with some vintage photos back in the day.

Later a fellow artist commented that it made her think of La Vie En Rose:

So I immediately googled a translation of this famous song by Edith Piaf and I will leave you with this quote:

“He whispers to me; I see life in pink.”

Rich in Fiber at the KKNK

Art portfolio- my work
detail of work in progress
You are invited!

I am happy to announce that my work “To view the world through rose colored glasses – a fiber optical illusion” will be included in the group exhibition “Rich in Fiber” at the KKNK 2022 :

“To view the world through rose colored glasses – a fiber optical illusion” Photographic print, thread, rubber, pastel and ink 2022

Should you spot this guy in the Klein Karoo, from 29 March to 3 April, feel free to let me know 😉