I have long been fascinated by statues as embodiments of aspirational feeling. Their historical significance is always relevant to a context which can so easily be misrepresented or misunderstood, particularly in a later context. They are sometimes maltreated or regarded as a manifestation of a lifestyle which is no longer understood or relevant. After the Rhodes statue was removed I became preoccupied with their meaning. Dreamy Boy is based on an original watercolour sketch of a garden statuette in the South of France, a whimsical character, who is unsure if he will be accepted. The fish are fertility symbols and represent hope for the future.
Rwandan Dream is a celebration of the women in Rwanda who strive to help develop their country after the horrific genocide in their recent history. This is achieved through mutual co-operation on projects using time honoured traditional methods of carrying and transportation. The atmospheric mountain colours and bold materials which the women wear are a dreamer’s inspiration. The parrot is based on ‘The Captain’ who was an honorary worker in the foyer of a hotel in the Cape Town foreshore and strutted about the reception desk, welcoming all the guests.
I am fascinated by pattern making and universal symbols/motifs seen in decorative designs. In my early years I saw African patterns and in my adulthood have become drawn to Celtic patterns. In this piece I have examined Celtic patterns and their links to African pattern making and plants. I have created an interaction between them, and the discourse is an intense connection between two imaginary characters surrounded by a patterned environment.
Dreamscape is an extended travel fantasy incorporating a number of images, such as some biblical animals from Chagall’s stained glass windows at Hadassah, and figurines at the V and A museum in London. I have used collage, with pink and blue Korean papers and South African hand soap floral papers. The watery base represents the underworld and swimming. The Orange and blue colours are shades which I love, and are strongly representative of the Old South Africa, which is fading from people’s memories.
This painting is in dedication to the influences of my childhood in Johannesburg, in the 50’s and 60’s when I visited a collection of masks, figurines, and Bushman paintings or their replicas. I regularly saw Maria Stein-Lessing’s collection of African Art at her home in Melville. Much of her collection was eventually donated to the Africa museum.
Tokoloshe is a much loved statuette owned and named by my family. He was bought in Rhodesia at the time and is a much loved character in the family. I have loved him since he was brought to the family home in Johannesburg in the mid 1970’s.