meet my Wilson

Art portfolio- my work


Goodmorning! I would love to share this wonderful initiative with you today!

I found the “Meet my Wilson” initiative on Instagram, and thought it is wonderful and wanted to participate!

I’m not sure if it is on the other social media platforms like Facebook, but if you have time, have fun and make a Wilson!

Much love



“nothing to gain and nothing to lose”

Studio news/blog

The play-pretend queen found a story about a ‘flute player”, and she would like to share it with you….

“A new flute was invented in China.  A Japanese master musician discovered the subtle beauties of its tone and brought it back home, where he gave concerts all around the country.  One evening he played with a community of musicians and music lovers who lived in a certain town.  At the end of the concert, his name was called.  He took out the new flute and played one piece.  When he was finished, there was silence in the room for a long moment.  There the voice of the oldest man was heard from the back of the room:  “Like a god!” 

Sketchbook page. Mixed media

The next day, as this master was packing to leave, the musicians approached him and asked how long it would take a skilled player to learn the new flute.  “Years,” he said.  They asked if he would take a pupil, and he agreed.  After he left, they decided among themselves to send a young man, a brilliantly talented flutist, sensitive to beauty, diligent and trustworthy.  They gave him money for the living expenses and for the master’s tuition, and sent him on his way to the capital, where the master lived.

The student arrived and was accepted by his teacher, who assigned him a single, simple tune.  At first he received systematic instruction, but he easily mastered all the technical problems.  Now he arrived for his daily lesson, sat down, and played his tune – and all the master could say was, “Something lacking.” The student exerted himself in every possible way,  he practiced for endless hours, yet day after day, week after week, all the master said was, “something lacking.” He begged the master to change the tune, but the master said no.  The daily playing , the daily “something lacking” continued for months on end.  The student’s hope of success and fear of failure became ever magnified, and he swung from agitation to despondency.

Finally the frustration became too much for him.  One night he packed his bag and slinked out.  He continued to live in the capital city for some time, longer, until his money ran dry.  He began drinking.  Finally, impoverished, he drifted back to his own part of the country.  Ashamed to show his face to his former colleagues, he found a bat far out in the countryside.  He still possessed his flutes, still played, but found no new inspiration in music.  Passing farmers heard him play and send their children to him for beginners’s lessons.  He lived this way for years.

One morning there was a knock at  his door.  It was the oldest past-master from his town, along with the youngest student.  They told him that tonight they were going to have a concert, and they had all decided it would not take place without him.  With some effort they overcame his feelings of fear and shame, and almost in a trance he picked up a flute and went with them. The concert began.  As he waited behind the stage, no one intruded on his inner silence.  Finally, at the end of the concert, his name was called.  He stepped out the stage in his rags.  He looked down at his hands, and realised that he had chosen the new flute.

Now he realized that he had nothing to gain and nothing to lose.  He sat down and played the same tune he had played so many times for his teacher in the past.  When he finished, there was silence for a long moment.  Then the voice of the oldest man was heard speaking softly from the back of the room:  ” Like a god!” 

quoted from a book I received as a gift recently called: “Free Play” by Stephen Nachmanovitch

Sketchbook page. Mixed media

Anyway, I hope you all had a wonderful Easter-weekend! Take care…xxx

Rabbit! where did you hide those eggs, girl? (detail of a work which I will tell you more about later)

kknk art festival 2013

Studio news/blog

The KKNK (Klein Karoo National Art Festival) started on the 29th (today was the last day).  At the beginning I felt very moody since my ‘lover’ named Art was in town and I was too busy being a mommy to spend time with ‘it’.  Having said that, I must admit that being in mommy-mode wasn’t so bad since we had some fun exploring the kiddies’ corner and enjoying ourselves at the merry-go-rounds.  Next year I hope to take them to see some kid orientated theatre productions.

On Thursday evening my husband made a very romantic gesture.  He was working for the KKNK as Assistant Logistic Visual Art coordinator, and so he was able to take me on a personalized art tour after hours, while kids were sleeping and mother in law looking after them.   I have been to the opening of the Visual Art, but spend the time talking to the artists, so tonight I got a chance to really take my time and engage with the work, which was absolutely amazing.

Here follows a sneak peak from each exhibition.  This is not a review, neither an entry of my own insights to the work.  It’s more like a show and tell.  Please keep in mind that my photos don’t do justice to the work and that I took these photos with low batteries and strange lightning, so I added links to the artists where possible (so that you can explore further if the need/want arise):

First up was the work by Ian Grose.  His exhibition was curated by Dr Paul Bayliss from ABSA and the exhibition was titled: Aantekeninge/Notes.

Ian Grose - Flowers seen from four corners of a table 2pm - 7pm (oil on linen)

Ian Grose – Flowers seen from four corners of a table 2pm – 7pm (oil on linen)

Ian was an ABSA l Atelier winner, and this was his first solo after he won the award.

Ian Grose - Self portrait (laptop) (oil on linen)

Ian Grose – Self portrait (laptop) (oil on linen)

After that we saw the ABSA Corporate exhibition also curated by Dr Bayliss – The seven deadly virtues.

I took this picture because as you know I love fairytales and this piece features the seven dwarves.

Artwork by Gordon Froud

Artwork by Gordon Froud

Detail of artwork by Gordon Froud

Detail of artwork by Gordon Froud

Up next was the show: Velvet – Curated by Christiaan Diedericks.  With this group exhibition artists were required to investigate more subtle imagery to interpret erotica.  According to the statement ‘Velvet” has more to do with the heart and soul’s longing than with the flesh.

Perseus by Christiaan Diedericks (colour pencil, watercolour, metal leaf and stitching on 300 gsm Fabriano Artistico paper)

Perseus by Christiaan Diedericks (colour pencil, watercolour, metal leaf and stitching on 300 gsm Fabriano Artistico paper)

The solo exhibition “When your feeling like a lady” by Robert Hamblin are photographic and video work dealing with the themes of masculinity and trans-identities.

Work by Robert Hamblin

Work by Robert Hamblin

Artwork by Robert Hamblin

Artwork by Robert Hamblin

Theo Kleynhans collected objects on his way to Oudtshoorn and painted on these items, and exhibited them in his solo exhibition entitled: Spoor.  He also made a video documentation of this journey.  Spoor is a lovely word in Afrikaans to play with, since it has such a wide variety of meaning.  Spoor = trace track trail, footprint, etc…  He explores not only the physical traces but also the emotional ones.

Theo Kleynhans "Bytjies en blommetjies' (groen, rooi en blou)

Theo Kleynhans “Bytjies en blommetjies’ (groen, rooi en blou)

Artwork by Theo Kleynhans

Artwork by Theo Kleynhans

Chris Koch in his solo exhibition Mans-Mens explore issues of being gay with digital manipulated images, accompanied by poetry by Chris Brunette.

Chris Koch "Daar sal bloed wees". (mixed media)

Chris Koch “Daar sal bloed wees”. (mixed media)

Chris Brunette "Daar sal bloed wees" poem

Chris Brunette “Daar sal bloed wees” poem

Next up is a two-women exhibition = Quintessence: 12 people I know and objects of enlightenment by Vanessa Berlein and Michele Davidson.

Each portrait in Vanessa’s work is framed with double glass.  The bottom one is engraved with prose she found relevant to the person painted, but this also makes viewing the portrait difficult.  The first layer of glass makes the viewer see his/her own reflection while looking at the portrait and so the viewer and viewed becomes one.

Artwork by Vanessa Berlein "Tess"

Artwork by Vanessa Berlein “Tess”

Michele aims to transform ordinary objects to something more ethereal.

"Marschmallows in a bowl" by Michelle Davidson (oil on canvas board)

“Marschmallows in a bowl” by Michelle Davidson (oil on canvas board)

The group show Vanitas 2013, curated by Clare Menck aimed to explore the old-worldly theme of Vanitas in contemporary South African painting.

I cannot resist an image with a doll:

Annelie Venter "Omwenteling" (oil on canvas)

Annelie Venter “Omwenteling” (oil on canvas)

Befoxycated, etc – a solo show by Annelie van der Vyver celebrated the relationship with a variety of generations and their foxterriers, as well as her own.  She works as a painter and illustrator; I personally adore her works on paper especially this one (can you guess why?):

Annelie van der Vyfer "Connected mother' (Gouache on paper)

Annelie van der Vyfer “Connected mother’ (Gouache on paper)

We also saw the group exhibition : Moleskine SA Art + Design project curated by Johann du Plessis.  Here we had the opportunity to experience the intimate process between artists and visual journals.

Artworks by Colijn Strydom and JP Meyer

Artworks by Colijn Strydom and JP Meyer

The Gallery Brundyn and Gonsalves bought the work of artist Tom Cullberg to the KKNK.

Art by Tom Cullberg

Art by Tom Cullberg

Next up was the work of Alex Hamilton (which I mentioned in an earlier post) called : Amper Almal.

"Amper almal" by Alex Hamilton (photo also by Alex Hamilton)

“Amper almal” by Alex Hamilton (photo also by Alex Hamilton)

In the earlier post (what a lot I got) I wondered if he would depict Oscar Pistorius, (by the way he didn’t) but he did make one of my favourite murderers (not that I think it might be considered sane to have a favourite murderer) the notorious Daisy de Melcker:

Daisy de Melcker by Alex Hamilton

Daisy de Melcker by Alex Hamilton

And my all time favourite outsider artist: Miss Helen Martins:

Helen Martins by Alex Hamilton

Helen Martins by Alex Hamilton

With the solo show : The last of us by Pauline Gutter, the artist doesn’t want to scare the viewer but want ‘us’ to be active and imaginative and get involved with the work.

Pauline Gutter "Doods-uur series" (Charcoal on paper)

Pauline Gutter “Doods-uur series” (Charcoal on paper)

She is probably better known as a painter, but I couldn’t resist taking photos of her sketches.

Doods-uur (series) by Pauline Gutter (Charcoal on paper

Doods-uur (series) by Pauline Gutter (Charcoal on paper

The artist Stephen Rosin tries to expose the ‘lies’ behind the ‘truth’ with his solo exhibition: Silence is golden: Political language, euphemism and bullsh#t.   With this show he pokes fun at the deceptive nature of authority.

The work “The fallacy of inappropriate authority”  — I quote:

Is a visual pun that makes reference to the logical fallacy of ARGUMETUM AD VERUCUNDIAM whereby a person in a position of authority uses this position to make incorrect and fallacious assertions based solely on their position rather than actually being an expert in the field being discussed.  A hypothetical example of this would be a high-ranking politician making the ridiculous assertion that the moon is made of cheese, and because of their position we are expected to believe them.

Unfortunately I couldn’t take a good photo of the work, but here is the description:

Medium:  Adjusted wooden knobkerrie (it looks like a phallus) painted gold, it rested on satin/pinstripe suit cloth base, Perspex display case and an antique banking desk.

But I did get a picture of this piece:

Stephen Rosin "Hierarchy/Oligarchy 2012/2013"

Stephen Rosin “Hierarchy/Oligarchy 2012/2013”

Streeksbiblioteek a solo exhibition by Olaf Bisschoff resembles a private library whereby the artist deconstructs books and uses as well as changes them into artworks.

"Pre-face" by Olaf Bisschoff

“Pre-face” by Olaf Bisschoff

I enjoyed his work a lot since I am a bibliophile by heart, but unfortunately I only have two photos- if you want to see more visit his website here.

Olaf Bisschoff "Daar sal gras groei" Oil on found book, glass, wood and paper

Olaf Bisschoff “Daar sal gras groei” Oil on found book, glass, wood and paper

Up next is the solo: Vergete verledes by Cobus van Bosch.

"Vergete Verledes" Cobus van Bosch

“Vergete Verledes” Cobus van Bosch

Me.Ek : a group exhibition curated by Prof. Elfriede Dryer reflects the search and understanding of identity in a variety of mediums.

Artwork by Jayne Crawshay-Hall

Artwork by Jayne Crawshay-Hall

Dolls by Ray Goosen and Colleen Ross

Dolls by Ray Goosen and Colleen Ross

And so the tour was over.  It was overwhelming and a lot to absorb.  Luckily I saw the festival artist: Diane Victor’s exhibition: “No Country for Old Women” earlier in the week

Installation by Diane Victor

Installation by Diane Victor

"Martyr, Minder, Mater by Diane Victor

“Martyr, Minder, Mater by Diane Victor

As well as the Tom Waits for no man exhibition curated by Gordon Froud (which I mentioned in a previous post)

part of the Tom Waits exhibition (photo by Alex Hamilton)

part of the Tom Waits exhibition (photo by Alex Hamilton)

I thank my dearest husband for spending that time with me and my ‘lover’.


Studio news/blog

A friend came to visit me last week.  She bought a book for my little boy called:

“The artist who painted a blue horse” by Eric Carle.

We both love reading it before bed each night.

On the inside of the jacket it says:

“In this book a child paints a blue horse.  Then, with growing confidence the young artist paints a series of other animals in bold, unrealistic colours and forms.  Young readers will readily empathize with the happiness the young artist expresses when the paintings are finished.

Through his eloquent pictures and an almost wordless text, Eric Carle will inspire young artists everywhere to use their imaginations.  They don’t have to ‘stay within the lines’.  And there certainly are no “wrong” colours.  Here is a book to give all children confidence in their own creativity!”

I also read that the author was inspired by “degenerate artists”.  (in this case Franz Marc. I especially love it where it says:

”…that children ought not to be inhibited by conventional rules, but instead, should be encouraged to express their natural talents freely and joyfully”

I know I sometimes feel inhibited by “conventional rules”, and that is why I think I enjoy creating these new works, since I try not to care about these rules….

According to wikipedia,

Degenerate art is the English translation of the German entartete Kunst, a term adopted by the Nazi regime in Germany to describe virtually all modern art. Such art was banned on the grounds that it was un-German or Jewish Bolshevist in nature, and those identified as degenerate artists were subjected to sanctions. These included being dismissed from teaching positions, being forbidden to exhibit or to sell their art, and in some cases being forbidden to produce art entirely.”

So I wonder if history is not repeating itself with this ‘Brett Murray- Spear” saga.

I enjoy reading about this in all its different guises.  I especially enjoyed the article by Pierre De Vos in the recent Arttimes:

“While any South Africans seem to have gotten rather upset (in a choreographed expression of moral outrage) about the supposedly in human, racist, degrading and humiliating painting of our President because the painting depicts – gasp! – a penis, the real inhuman, racist, degrading and humiliating neglect of our government selling the school children of Limpopo down the drain goes unremarked on.   Why worry about a few million starving children when one can get cross about the Presidential willy.”

Wikipedia again:

As dictator, Hitler gave his personal taste in art the force of law to a degree never before seen. Only in Stalin’sSoviet Union, where Socialist Realism was the mandatory style, had a state shown such concern with regulation of the arts.[5]

It seems the same now….Anyway I dont like politics…

While searching degenerate art, I stumbled upon this website:

I really enjoyed it since I appreciate Marilyn Manson….

and Salvador Dali….

What a lovely combination!

“Manson as Dalí on a 2006 shot for Juxtapoz magazine, with his 1999 watercolor painting ‘Die Deutsche Kampferin’ (The German female fighter, a title derived from a woman’s magazine Nazi propaganda) representing an androgynous Hitler, a reference to Dalí’s fascination for fascism, particularly the sensuality and eroticism he claimed to see in Hitler, and to the “degenerate” nature of his work. Also notice the columbines next to the chaplinesque figure”

“This one was very much a dedication to Dalí because he had painted ‘Hitler as a Housewife’ and the paintings were destroyed when he exhibited them with the exhibition for Un Chien Andalou with Bunuel, and so no one has ever seen them. So when I was reading about them, I wanted to paint something in return, but living in Hollywood I thought there was a bit of Chaplin in it all. I think it’s funny when you have a mustache and it really defines sort of ‘evil’ or ‘funny’. Change hats, same moustache.”

Marilyn Manson, at the vernissage of his Trismegistus art show
December 5, 2008