Saturday, December 14, 2013

Greetings till next month!

I will be off the radar and offline for the festive season, so I leave you with these wishes:

May the time ahead be a time of reflection and gratitude
May your life be filled with special shared moments with family
I hope you realize that the true spirit of Christmas
is in love and compassion, in sharing and in nurturing hope
A Spirit of joy and finding beauty in everything
A Spirit of being grateful for everything we have and are able
to experience right now, in the present, without worrying about the future
A Spirit of trust that everything happens for a reason
and that everything that happened this year has made you stronger
and better equipped to meet the challenges that 2014 will bring.
May the festive season be a reminder that life is not about the
hard-earned money and the gifts we buy with them, but it's
about the time we can share with those we love,
sharing gifts of peace, love and togetherness.
Have a wonderful Christmas and may you make beautiful memories
with the moments you choose to experience and share!

I will be back in the studio on 14 January 2014

Monday, November 18, 2013

Recent Work

"Hemispheres", Mixed media on wood, 248 x 198mm each, 2013
In the same way that the left and right side of our body needs to communicate effectively to support our movement and functioning - the left and right hemispheres of the brain working together - the different hemispheres of the earth and the plant kingdom work together to sustain life on Earth.

From my sketchbook: beetle flying towards the tip of a grass-seed-stem, and the trunk of a Quiver Tree

"Grow III", Mixed media, 2013

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

16 -17 Nov: Gift Making & Writing

Write On Presents

Gifts From The Heart 

A 2 Day Gift Making & Writing Workshop  

  • When last did you tell the people in your life how much you appreciate and love them?
  • Tired of writing the same old generic Christmas cards each year? 
  • Want to express how you feel to your loved ones but don’t know how to say it?

If you love making things by hand, are obsessed with Pinterest or just want to give something different to your friends and family this festive season, Gifts from the Heart is a two day workshop happening this weekend. 

On this workshop, you will learn how to:

  • Share from the heart with the people in your life about how much they mean to you 
  • Express Yourself Through The Medium of Writing & Art
  • Find the words you’ve been searching for to show people your gratitude and love
  • Learn how to unblock yourself creatively in a supportive and fun environment 
  • Experiment & play with creative techniques while making personalised gifts for your friends and family to take home with you 

The workshop will be facilitated by Amy Kaye & Janet Botes. 
Amy Kaye is the founder of Write On South Africa and is a published writer and poet who will be teaching students how to unblock themselves creatively, how to find the words to express their thoughts and feelings and to find their voice through writing.
Janet Botes is a visual artist and workshop facilitator. She will help you take your words and transform them into beautiful  gifts through artistic and creative techniques suited to both the regular DIYer and the absolute novice. 
Dates:  Saturday 16 & Sunday 17 November 2013
Time: 1-5pm
Where: The Inspiration Playground, Woodstock – Email us for directions
Price: R1200

Spaces are limited and bookings are made on a first come, first served basis.  All payments must by made by Friday the 15th of November 2013. 

For booking enquiries, email:

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Workshops in November

Play, explore, build, and create.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013, 6pm - 9pm.

Venue: Art Source Workshop Space, 44 Lower Main Road,  Observatory, Cape Town. Cost: R300, which include materials & some (healthy) snacks.

Thursday, 28 November 2013, 9am - 12noon.

Venue: TBA, Cape Town. Cost: R300, which include materials & some (healthy) snacks.            

Develop or celebrate your creativity by working with mixed media. We’re going to create new artworks from found objects and raw materials, with a focus on experimentation and mixing:
  • combining different materials and techniques
  • mixing your own paints.
The workshop is planned to be explorative, comfortable, informal and fun. I always try to be supportive in the way I guide you while encouraging your own inherent creativity. Please note, places are limited, so booking is essential.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Land Art on Sunset Beach

I was up this morning at 5h15, preparing for a morning of playing and creating on the beach from about 6h15. Diaan Mynhardt, a very talented photographer, joined to capture this human-nature co-creation, as well as artist Janet Ranson, who created a large-scale snaking kelp-installation. It was a morning filled with beauty and magical moments - including my utter delight of creating sand lines that partially get washed away by the very slowly-incoming tide. I also found the power of the water that pushes onto the beach astonishing - the rushing water flinging the pebbles against the sides of my bare feet and ankles.

I should add that I did get slighty agitated when the water kept washing away the small rocks before it was 'the right time', which then made me realise that it's an apt metaphor for life - things don't always work out the way that we want it to, but instead of fighting against it or getting unhappy about it, rather appreciate that there's so much other things that DO go well.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Land Art: Upington, September 2013

It seems the theme for this Upington visit was rocks (symbolic for stability and as lines in/on the earth) and twigs (growth, direction and building). Except of course for the sheep's scat (yup, 'skaapdrolletjies'!)...

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

I just have to share this...

Earthlife Africa Press Release: The climate circus is in town!

An international conference concerned with clean air, the International Union of Air Pollution Prevention Association’s (IUAPPA) “Clean Air Congress” in Cape Town at the end of September, is being sponsored by some of South Africa’s biggest air polluters.

Sasol (which is the emitter of the largest point source of climate changing greenhouse changing gases in the world); Eskom (who are currently requesting an exemption from compliance with South Africa’s National Air Quality Act and supporting plans to build yet a third mega-coal fired power station, notwithstanding radioactive emissions from its Koeberg nuclear power plant); Engen (with a long history of harm to residents of South Durban); Shell (linked to human rights and environmental violations in the Niger delta, and one of many who wish to carry out polluting hydraulic fracturing in our country) and Exarro, our 2nd largest coal mining company. We find it surprising that no mention is made of the fatally toxic and radioactive air pollution planned by the smelter plants of the South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) at Pelindaba.

“The Clean Air Congress is shown for what it is – an opportunity for South Africa’s Climate Clowns to sponsor a green-washing circus” said Muna Lakhani of Earthlife Africa Cape Town. “The irony is compounded by the fact that the Mayor of Cape Town and the MEC for the Western Cape (who are featured speakers at the Congress) support this process.”

Over 60 civil society organisations find this Congress problematic. An indication of the potential for “green-wash” can be found in the draft programme (fourth revision), which has as a heading “Health Impacts and Perceptions.”
“The health impacts of air pollution are not ‘perceptions’, they are a fact!” commented Des D’sa of the South Durban Community Environmental Alliance (SDCEA). “Our children and other residents suffer from high rates of upper respiratory tract problems due to poor air quality in South Durban.” 

They are calling for companies to take responsibility for their actions, and for government to hold them accountable, in a transparent manner.

Roegshanda Pascoe, of the Manenberg development co-ordinating structure, says “Our people are hurting with the high and rising electricity prices, and with nuclear and more coal power stations, prices will just keep on escalating. Since the first price increases, we have seen an increase in domestic violence linked to unaffordability of electricity, and other social impacts. It is time government takes the steps necessary to change our vision to one of energy security for all, in a safe and sustainable way.”

Community members feel that government must take their lead from our Constitution, and fully engage civil society in our supposed “participative democracy” in fully informed and thorough consultation before taking decisions on behalf of communities, especially the poor.

The media is encouraged to cover this congress, and ask the questions that civil society are asking, viz:

  1. Why is a parastatal even asking for an exemption from our National Air Quality Act, when a substantial body of evidence confirms harm from coal fired power stations?
  2. Why is fracking even being considered, when it is at least as problematic as coal, certainly from a climate change perspective? Has nothing been learnt from water, land and air pollution impacts elsewhere in the world, accompanied by social devastation?
  3. Why is government complicit in these kinds of “greenwashing” exercises, yet finds it impossible to hold companies to account for the known harm that they do?
  4. What is the point of IUAPPA convening such a congress under these auspices, when even they (IUAPPA) confirm: “Air pollution causes over 800,000 deaths and tens of millions of respiratory and other illnesses each year. It damages ecosystems and affects quality of life, reduces economic activity and reinforces the cycle of poverty in many areas of the world.”

Civil society that is concerned with plans for more climate change-inducing coal fired power stations that is now on the cards in South Africa, dangerous and expensive nuclear power, polluting and socially and environmentally devastating hydraulic fracturing (fracking), problematic coal mines and the high price of electricity, have come together to protest this gathering of our polluters and government representatives.

The protest is planned for Sunday the 29th of September between 2pm and 4pm opposite the Cape Town International Convention Centre. Cape Town Mayor, Councillor Patricia de Lille, and representatives from the named polluting companies have been invited to receive a memorandum outlining the concerns of civil society that believe the polluter-pays-principle should be strictly enforced. This initiative has thus far received the support of more than 80 organisations.

Come and join us!!

This initiative is supported by:

Earthlife Africa Cape Town; CAPTRUST; Community Consent Movement; Manenberg Dev Co-ord Structure; Southern Cape Land Committee, Groundwork, South Durban Community Environmental Alliance,  Cochoqua Tribal House (Khoi San), Coalition for Environmental Justice, Million Climate Jobs Campaign, The South African United National Anti-nuclear Mobilisation Initiative (TSUNAMI) comprising over 60 organisations; Coalition Against Nuclear Energy (CANE) comprising numerous community-based organisations, professionals and NGOs.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Pieces, Puzzles & Performances

If you haven't had a look at the work exhibited as part of the "Pieces & Puzzles" exhibition, hosted by the Lovell Gallery in Woodstock, and curated by Stefanie Schoeman, then you really need to make it part of your itinerary for a September Saturday. Why? Because for three September Saturdays, there will be performances and artist talks at 11h00 at the gallery, so you can have an interactive experience along with a walkabout of beautiful, nature-inspired artworks!

My work, inspired by 'metamorphosis' in the foreground,
with Stefanie Schoeman's incredible installations of
hanging bones, rocks and wood in the background.

Two beautiful artists... Sigourney Smuts and Danelle Malan
during the opening of the Pieces & Puzzles exhibition on 23 August 2013

Danelle Malan's beautiful and intricate ink works.

Me, in front of my work, on the opening day of the exhibition.
(Photograph by multi-discplinary artist Claire Homewood)

As part of the 'Pieces and Puzzles' exhibition you are invited for a variety of artist talks, poetry performances and music on each of the remaining Saturdays during September. The tone will be that of casual interactions between artists, poets and musicians along with the public to mutual exposure and an opportunity to learn.

Saturday, 7 September 11h00

Performance by Leàn Coetzer Artist Talks by Andrew Yeaman, Loni Drager, Leila Fanner, Rebecca Jones and Carmelina & Lee

Saturday, 14 September 11h00

Performance by spoken word artist Amy Kaye and Die Dowe Digters (poetry collective) Artist Talk by Riaan van Zyl, Ben Winfield, Danelle Malan, David Brits and Ian Brumfitt.

Saturday, 21 September 11h00

Performance by Viccy Wanliss and music duo Mesmer Artist Talk by Janet Botes, Hanien Conradie, Claire Homewood, Johke and Stefanie Schoeman

Lovell Gallery | Gallery Hours: Tuesday - Friday 10h00 - 18h00, Saturday 10h00 - 14h00
139 Albert Rd, Woodstock   |

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Sand Circles and Mud Patterns - collaboration

(Photograph by Darren Bruce Lyon)

Circles in the sand by Darren Bruce Lyon, also known as Das. He created these circles in the sand in front of the rocks I painted with mud, while participating in Andrew van der Merwe's Beach Calligraphy course during the Site_Specific Land Art bienalle. Resulting in an incidental creative collaboration! I love the way his geometric interlinking circles contrasts with the organic pattern I created on the rocks.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Creative Energy and Flow at Site_Specific

I was very privileged to be one of the artists for the 2013 Site_Specific International Land Art Biennale, held in Plettenberg Bay from 10-17 August. I met incredible artists, professionals and also members of the public (some as young as 5 years old, while others were retired and had a lot of experience and wonderful stories to share). I'd like to share the work that I did during the week...

Inspired and fascinated by the splatter patterns of water on sand,
the idea started to form around
the connection and borders
between land and sea. 

Sea to me = Spatters Waves Foam Water Flow
Land brought me to soil, mud, "grond"

Only after I started playing and experimenting with the mud on the sand and rocks did I find out about the ship that got stranded just up the coast towards Knysna and Wilderness, leaking oil. My artwork incidentally or accidentally gained a new layer of meaning.

"Flow" and "Riding the Wave" became slogans for my week - realizing I had to manage my energy levels, taking advantage of the inspiration and creative flow, because time seemed to fly past sooo quickly!

...The sands of time...

Painting with Mud.
Connecting with the rocks that has not yet eroded into sand.

Flow. Drift. Splatter
Flowing with clarity and energized focus.
Creating, Working
Being in the moment.

Drifting along, swept away by emotions.
Feelings, thoughts that ebb and flow like the tides.
While oil seep into the cracks of our survival.
Spluttering, Crashing against rock, 
hitting your head against a wall to leave your mark.

Flow, Focus, Have Faith
that you are in the right place at the right time.
That everything can be healed, washed away
By water. Or by Time.

 For images of work by the other Site_Specific artists and participants, go to: 

Pieces & Puzzles at the Lovell Gallery

"Glimpses", Janet Botes, 2013. To be exhibited as part of:

Pieces & Puzzles: Compositions of Human Expression Inspired by Nature.
Made, Mind, Explore; the Imagination of Nature

Join us for the opening of our Exhibition on Saturday, 24 August 2013 @ The Lovell Gallery

The exhibition will run from 24 August until 26 September and if you cannot attend the opening; be sure not to miss the show!

Curated by Stefanie Schoeman

Invitation design by David Brits
c. 0741057007 | w. | w.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

New work: A Perspective On Time

A Perspective on Time
Mixed Media on wood/board
36.8 x 32.3 cm (unframed)

Part of my Beach Meditation series, which are inspired by land art that I created by placing or arranging found pebbles on the beach. Each of these land art pieces were made as a prayer or meditation. 

This particular painting is focused on time - the rings of circular 'sun' design being divided into 12 sections for the months of the year, into 24 sections for the hours within a day, and 28 lines symbolizing a moon cycle. The focus of this particular 'meditation' is about using our time wisely in ways that support our goals, priorities and dreams. 

I've been giving a lot of time away freely the last few years, and I've also wasted some time on doing things that made me neglect my own needs, as well as the people I love. I am learning to find a balance in the way that I spend my time, making sure that everything I choose to spend time on, is done for and with the right reasons and intention.