Blood and Bone

Following the embroidery piece I made that was based on a photo of my grandmother, I used another photo as the starting point for a similar piece.

My grandmother posing on a horse (not hers).

She’s just sitting on the horse with no movement or action in the shot, but I liked the image of her with the animal so I added a bit of movement.

The image of a woman riding a horse with purpose and confidence more accurately represents how I remember my grandmother. The wild flowers represent the uncontrollable elements of nature and life.

Detail.

Susan

My grandmother, Susan (Susie) Prinsloo, finds her way into my art from time to time. Before my brother and I went to school, we would stay with her while my parents were at work – she basically lived next door. Let me add that our family has up until recently, never lived within the urban boundary of the town/city we lived in. Before we moved to the Western Cape, we lived and played in the hills of the Uitkyk Pass near Nelspruit, Mpumalanga.

susan-3
Sisters: Joey (left) and Susie.

I remember her teaching us how to knit and to make brooches using igneous rocks and safety pins. She also made the best rooibos kombucha tea. This time spent in nature, being creative and not being influenced by peers, undoubtedly influenced who I am today. It is not surprising that I often use imagery of Susan in or as reference in my art.

She passed away in 1993, but she lives on in the hearts of our family and in my art.

Susan-1

susan-2

Bound by Fiction

The idea for this work came from the fact that I have no knowledge of who my neighbours are, apart from what I can infer from their early morning arguments. My ineptitude when it comes to speaking Korean, further amplifies this inability to fully understand by surroundings completely. I’m isolated in my apartment by my lack of knowledge. And even when I try to imagine who the people are that I share my walls with, I am limited by my own experience, imagination and understanding of life. My understanding of the world limits me. How we judge other people, or situations, speak more about us than it does about them. These limits extend to my own identity and relationships with other people, as these things are bound by my own perspective. We all are.

Bound by Fiction_2016_1

The viewer was encouraged to write down dialogue or clues as to what was happening in the scene. Some photos of the installation at the exhibition.

Bound by Fiction

Audience Participation

Amigos

A drawing requested by a friend of mine. She was planning to print the image on T-shirts for Christmas to give to people she’s befriended in Vietnam – each characters represent one of them. I’ve never met them and discovered that it was easier for me to draw the llama (depicting her) than it was drawing the other two – probably because I had a better feel as to her personality.

3amigos

Girl in Sweater II

This is the second of three pieces I plan on showing at the Daejeon Arts Collective‘s 8th group exhibition in November. Three weeks to go and one piece left to embroider. I’m watching Gotham season 1 while I stitch, so I should be up to date by the time I finish the final piece.

Girl with Sweater 2

A friend mentioned that the girl resembles the Canadian ‘record producer, artist, musician, singer, songwriter and music video director’ named Grimes. I had to Google who that was, but I see it. She can be whoever you want her to be.

girl2_detail

*This piece is now in the collection of Venus Lukic.

Sea Turtle

As I mentioned before, I started embroidering a turtle sketch that I made a long time ago. I started both the turtle and the girl with the pink sweater at the same time, but go carried away trying to finish the sweater. The sea turtle is finally done now too.

Sea Turtle

Initially I wanted to use colour on the turtle, but I liked the way it turned out after I was done doing the outlines, so I added colour to the background. It took way longer than I thought it would – about 2 seasons of The Sopranos worth. As someone mentioned on facebook, it now looks as if the turtle is weightlessly gliding through space. Works for me.

Sea Turtle_detail

*This piece is now in the collection of Eibhlín Ní Fhallamháin.

It’s a Jungle Out There

Lately, I’ve been thinking about the direction my jewelry work might go, looking at many pieces and collections by other designers, and trying to figure out what my “style” might me as a designer. I dislike the concept that a designer needs to adhere to a style in order to be recognised or stand out, but I guess that’s the way the world works. There is a growing trend in the market of dainty, minimalist jewelry. There are tons of really great designs out there. Some are really easy to make though – I know because I’ve tried making some of them. That’s how you learn right. If I start selling my own jewelry on a bigger scale, that’s probably the way to go – with my own twist of course.

There is however the artist/designer side of me, who wants to see what is possible with this medium, who likes to be challenged. Applying techniques and skills available to me, to create a piece that it truly original and unique – without being overly gaudy. The market for these pieces is obviously a lot smaller. These are supposed to be pieces that you attach sentimental meaning or value to. I want to explore that side of this trade as well.

To me design – in any field – is figuring out how to create something with the resources, skills and techniques available. It’s a process of solving a problem; having and idea of what you want to achieve and then figuring out the best way to apply techniques, materials and skills at your disposal to replicate the image in your mind. I want to explore that side of this art/trade as well.

The following piece falls into the second category of my designs; the once off originals. I mentioned in the previous post that I want to make series depicting endangered animals or habitats.

tropic 1

This piece was inspired in part by a piece of art by Arymiss which I recently acquired,  in part by the Monstera plant making quite the comeback – I am not immune to trends – and, as my mother pointed out, because it’s reminiscent of our lush, tropical garden in Mpumalanga, where I was born.

tropic 2

Girl in Sweater

I mentioned that  I would start embroidering the sea turtle sketch next, and though I did start on it, I got sidetracked and completed this one instead. It’s one of my temptress sketches, but she’s wearing a sweater instead of a corset. I watched the last three seasons of The Wire while doing this one.

girl with pink sweater

Detail:

girl with pink sweater_detail

*This piece is now in the collection of Rosalie and James Knaack.