Category Archives: EXHIBITIONS

MY FAVOURITES at Investec 2020 https://www.investeccapetownartfair.co.za/


This year, the textured items and the very colourful items were top of my list.

When it comes to colour, who could resist this vibrant display put up by Kwa Zulu Natal artists. The juxtaposition of the hot curry reds, oranges and yellows offset by the contrasting tropical greens and sky blues, screamed DURBAN at me. For northern hemisphere readers, Durban has a huge Indian population and is renowned for being Curry Central!

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And how about this Marion Arnold wool tapestry, Untitled, 265 x 377 cm, Rich colours somewhat reminiscent of a Pierneef landscape .

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And I would be remiss if I didn’t include this stunning display of traditional artist EstherMahlangu’s traditional Ndebele art work. Would you believe she uses a chicken feather as a brush?  My pic is a poor one, because so many viewers were constantly blocking my shot, but it’s the best I managed to get. Take a moment to follow the link: what a fascinating story.

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I enjoyed the next  work : textile wrapped fighting sticks and spears – I don’t know the title or artist, but I enjoyed the colours and textures

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Then I found this bold orange and yellow and black work, which ticked the colours & textures boxes very neatly. It was executed in leather and, I think, fabric; I was so enchanted by the colours and shapes, I forgot to take a pic of the signage It had a sort of snakes-and-ladders feel to it.

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TEXTURE
A charming crocheted gecko caught my eye. I don’t want it on a wall in my house, but I thought it was fun.

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Appearances can be very deceiving. I thought the next exhibit  was a woven fibre work, but not so. Paper beads, mounted on bark cloth. What a surprise! Usage of very Africa materials.
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I enjoyed this set of 8 pictures, executed by a woman from West Africa, using natural fibres and seeds to create the textured effects.

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Artists come up with the most innovative ideas. Here’s a work, executed on graph paper, in crossstitch. The shadowy images in the work caught my eye.

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I’ve saved the best until last. Just look at the texture in this work. It had a lush, rich texture, akin to velvet turned into shag carpeting. I was fascinated. When I drew closer to the work I was stunned to discover it was composed of … wait for it … “toothpicks in polyeurethane sealant in pine wood frames” by Chris Soal. Talk about appearances being deceptive!
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Watch this space: more pix in a day or two. We’re not done yet – it was a big exhibition!

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THE ANNUAL INVESTEC CAPE TOWN ART FAIR – February 2020


This weekend I visited the Investec Art Fair  – my annual treat. I wouldn’t miss it for the world!

What a feast of art across a wide spectrum: photography, painting, sculpture, ceramics, weaving, prints, art books and more besides. Obviously the theme is African Art, but artists from the diaspora and Europe were also on show. It really is an international exhibition. This year one of the themes was to exhibit emerging artists, not only from Africa, but, including artists from the Middle East, North America and Europe. So here are my photos of some of the works that  blew me away and that I enjoyed. I’m splitting the pics into separate sections , which I’ll post at intervals, otherwise its too much to take in and appreciate.
So: at the Investec (the sponsors stand) I found this multi-media statement :

 

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And an installation, which – for once – I enjoyed. I’m not a fan of installations.

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I don’t think I would be tempted to try sitting on this sofa, it looks both flimsy and uncomfortable, but if the sign were not there, trust me, some idiot would be lowering their rear end on to the item!

 

You know you’re at an African art exhibition when you see this:
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That ubiquitous football. Africans love football!

Another ubiquitous feature of the African landscape: goats. Although I have mixed feelings about this artwork. The human figure with goat hooves left me with an uneasy feeling.

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Another Art Fair post will follow in a day or two. I hope you’ve enjoyed what you’ve seen thus far. The show was big, and I only photographed items which appealed to me, so my pics are a very individual view.

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VISITING THE 2019 INVESTEC ART FAIR


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Overall impressions: more exhibits this year;  a  far more International array of work – Angola, Kenya, Uganda, Angola, Zimbabwe, and from Europe France, Italy, Germany, Britain – I even spotted one Australian  Art Gallery’s stand! I watched dapper little men with neat van Dyk beards, clad in seersucker suits, excitedly waving their hands  and explaining the finer points of displayed works in heavily foreign accents …. No doubt about it, much more international this year.

The inventive use of mundane objects for art projects was typically African : the humble clothes peg, metal bottle tops, fabrics, woven  fibre ropes, plasticised hessian bag fabric , plus others that I ‘m sure I missed in the huge exhibition.

Last year’s centre piece was the pink polar bear wearing its blue tutu. Nothing so frivolous this time. There was centrally displayed  Teddy Bear, giant sized, in pale terracotta ceramic, in a seated position and but I didn’t take a pic – I  found the deconstructed bear showing its plastic exo skeleton very off-putting.However, I did spot this mixed media (beads and artificial flowers)  Albino   bust which  was an unusual  item. Albinism in Africa is often the subject of superstition and persecution.

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I was conscious of so much texture this time around. Some notably prickly works. I can imagine what a traffic hazard these protruding rigid wires would be in a confined space.

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I loved the vivid colours of the  plastic snake-y coils a sort of wild reinvention of mating pythons. One of my favourite pieces.

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And what looks like fabric or yarn, but is in fact a heavily textured plastic paint .

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And beautiful work crated out of coiled sisal strips – I really liked this.

 

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Not many  ceramics . but I spotted this, and pray none of my friends decide it would make a lovely gift for me!

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But I did like these little ceramic  objets d’art:

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Plenty of fabric of one sort and another :

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This quirky bicycle caught my eye
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The Feet – striking – if only I could read Arabic.

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I loved the 8 portrait series of (presumably) Toureg men .

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And the 12 small Cubist works

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Finally: a dash of colour from Angola:

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There was so much more to see and enjoy, but I couldn’t take pics of everything. For info on the Prize Winners  and other details, please go to :https://www.investeccapetownartfair.co.za/

Had I won the Lotto I would have gone mad at the Print stands.  But I went home empty handed, replete with colour, texture and adventure. The annual Investec February Art Fair is one of my favourite events – I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

 

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INVESTEC 2018 ART FAIR


 

20180218_121906.jpgI enjoy visiting the annual Cape Town Art Fair, but I’m   not sure whether the greatest spectacle at these events are the art works, or the audience.

 

 

 

 

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I have no idea what the polar bear, covered in pink and cobalt feathers, was all about; who the artist was, or what the work was titled. It was prominently placed, and surrounded by enchanted children; me being one of them.
This year’s Cape Town Art Fair included work from many African countries, amongst them Angola, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania. There were others, but I didn’t note all the names.

I notice how many artists chose to work with fabric :

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And yet again I have evidence of why I don’t enjoy installations:

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Reminds me of someone’s patio that’s being used as a junk room. And don’t get me started on the wall of household irons, neatly arranged on a wall, pointy front facing downwards, cords and plugs dangling alongside. I didn’t manage to catch a pic of the Irons Wall – too many people standing in front of me. A dazzling array of different irons to be sure, every colour, model and make you can imagine, but … WTF ? sorry, but that was one work I just didn’t get. Not to overlook the pink polar bear of course, but there I enjoyed the whimsy.

 
What I did enjoy was the original and unusual work of Ingrid Bolton, who worked with copper wire to create beautiful and unusual mosaic effect pieces, reminiscent of Moorish tile work:

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My work explores how copper is deconstructed, broken down into individual strands and then reconstructed in various ways. The cable comes together to suggest layers of soil, water or skin. I investigate how the global demand for copper has micro and macro implications for South Africa as well as and the greater global community.

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ps://www.investec.com/en_za/welcome-to-investec/news-and-views/i
http://www.investeccapetownartfair.co.za/exhibitors/

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