The art of my life
What people do has become the inspiration for my art. When I moved into a working-class area of Cape Town, what the people were doing there to survive became the source of my art while their characters became my inspiration.
During the ongoing turmoil over a minimum wage, I came across a 1956 Work Ledger and I painted workers on pages from it. This resulted in a dialogue, between the people illustrated in the works and the authoritarian rules and procedures in the document.
The resultant and growing feelings of social responsibility also led me scavenge the material with which and on which these people worked and out of this came what I call transmutation.
I take the discarded materials of modern work and transmute their surfaces into artefacts with a powerful appeal to current artistic sensibilities. Scarred wood, rusted steel, battered metal and builder’s planks are all grist to my grinder, saw and paint brush. The story of each piece is transmutation, the outcome, I hope, is enchantment.
I believe that the dialogue I initiate in my work starts a chain reaction; between my thoughts and the subject matter, between the elements in the work – the images, the objects and the background – all integrated and reinforced by the strong binding shadows I invariably include. Crucial to it all is the satisfying dialogue between my art and the viewer, because I believe that our experience of a piece of art is enhanced by our understanding of the values it signifies.
- I paint to fill the need to create.
- I am constantly experimenting with media and subject matter.
- The compulsion to recycle pushes me towards mixed media.
- Although I try stay clear of politics, the fact that I use historic paper and contrast what is written with contemporary life it can be seen as political. I prefer to call it social commentary.
- Cape Town and it’s people provide contradictions and contrasts to work from.
- Every day is an inspiration.
- The need to revel and reflect life’s beauty drives me to create.
- To share the delight in the seemingly ordinary.