She always wanted to be a bad girl

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"She always wanted to be a bad girl" 2016 Cotton thread and rubber 92 x 65 cm

“She always wanted to be a bad girl” 2016 Cotton thread and rubber 92 x 65 cm

It’s true…since childhood I preferred the ‘bad guys’ in stories more that the good ones. Why?

Well, because they are funny, sometimes they try harder, even when ‘good’ are sure to win. I also find their characters more interesting- and nobody ‘likes’ them…I have a soft-spot for outcasts.

My brother used to have He-Man toys, and back in the day there was a whole television series about it. Skeletor wasn’t portrayed as being very clever….I guess that’s why I don’t find him scary.

Metamorphic humour, which seizes the objects of fear, like beasts, and turns them into something different, something reassuring and even desirable has been the most wildly and successfully adopted stratagem in the confrontation of fear.

Attitudes to scariness change over time…needless to say not everyone enjoys being scared. (from the book: No go the Bogeyman by Marina Warner

“Here be dragons…”

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The group exhibition: “Here be dragons” opened tonight at Underculture Contemporary gallery.  I am happy to inform you that I am part of this exciting show.

This is what the gallery had to say about their last exhibition of 2014:

Medieval cartographers used the words “here be dragons” to warn seafarers away from uncharted and potentially dangerous corners of the globe, where sea monsters were believed to exist.

Meant to act as a deterrent, the warning instead ignited the imaginations of a few intrepid explorers, who set off in search of these terra incognita or unknown lands.

Much like these adventurers of old, contemporary artists are driven by an inner need to push back the boundaries, explore ideas, examine accepted myths and discover new territory.

For those who would share this modern quest, Underculture Contemporary invites you to join us as we launch our final group exhibition of 2014.

Exhibition: Here Be Dragons

While some may perceive the Eastern Cape as the uncharted corner of the South African visual arts industry, for those in the know it holds a wealth of talent and promise.

For this exhibition, some of the region’s best-known artists and rising stars come together to bring you the products of their artistic journeys.

This curated group showcase will feature a menagerie of fantastic creatures from the far corners of the province.

Come and support, enjoy and marvel at the arts and artists of the Eastern Cape. This is a show to celebrate the end of your voyage through 2014!

Please join us for the exhibition opening at 18:30 for 19:00 on Wednesday, December 10. The show closes on January 9, after which it will travel to Bloemfontein’s foremost contemporary space, Gallery on Leviseur.

"I'll kill a dragon for you" Embroidery on rubber/inner tubes and found object 2014

“I’ll kill a dragon for you” Embroidery on rubber/inner tubes and found object 2014

Dragons are a favourite subject in our household.  My 6 year old son is convinced that they still exist.  He desperately wants to visit a place called the “Drakensberg” because that’s where they reside in South Africa according to him.  Our 4 year old son constantly wanted me to remove his toy (featured on the work above)  whenever he saw it in my studio, but I convinced him that I need/want it for this work, since he doesn’t play with it any more.  Strange that as soon as my kids see their toys which they stopped playing with in another context then suddenly they want to play with it again.  Luckily we could reach an agreement without too much conflict.

The title of this work was inspired by the lyrics from one of my favourite Sinead O’ Connor songs: Troy:



Studio news/blog

After 35 years I still love to play

If I had the means I would keep on buying toys for myself.

The toys I have in mind are those created by two different and amazing artists:

  1.  Annette Messager-  I have been a huge fan since I saw her work in a book featuring her early works in 2004.  One day I hope to see her work in person.

Pages from the book: Annette Messager- The Messengers

  1. Rosemary Marriot-  I saw her work for the first time at an art festival a couple of years back and fell in love with it instantly.  Unfortunately I missed her show: Relaas (meaning narritave.)………………

“Relaas: ringe ringe rosie” by Rosemarie Marriot

Marriott states that she “attempts to capture how a child might envisage and interpret children’s parables and nursery rhymes”.

Relaas: Drievoud by Rosemarie Marriott

According to some internet sources her materials reference her early childhood spent on a farm in the dry Kuruman area.  (It’s a pity that she doesn’t have a website)

I love how the both of them have a tendency to combine taxidermy with toys.


Art portfolio- my work

” One learns more from a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation”  Plato

I couldn’t agree more! I love playing-  and always will.  It gets more difficult the older one gets, but luckily with two little ones- one are constantly reminded about the importance of play.

So recently I did a window display (my first!) for a shop called Mega Plastics.  The brief: To use any products from their shop.  Thats it.  How nice to have so much freedom! Unfortunately I had self inflicted time constraints –

Inspired by “The birth of Venus”, summer and plastic= I arrived at this look:

Had so much fun playing!

I find myself getting so wrapped up in daily life an responsibilities, that I have to teach and remind myself to play a little.  The more I play the better I get at it.- and find myself feeling more and more creative!

My Lobotoy-me project is coming along nicely.  Hopefully soon I will have a bit more time to start drawing again- since I really miss the feel of paper these days.  But for now I am still having fun making toys from inner tubes.  Recently I got a request to make a giraffe.  I’ve got a friend that goes ga ga over giraffes.

The same friend send me some books the other day:  Boating for beginners by Jeanette Winterson. (one of my favourite authors)  And coincidentally? the story has something to do with Noah’s Ark (or not?)  Talking about Noah’s Ark- 15 toys are at the COP17 in Durban….as part of the CCDI’s exhibition also called Noah’s ark.

I love connecting the dots!

Anyway this year is almost over…..So I’ll try to slow down a bit…..