04 January, 2014

The sentiment of the place

I spent my honeymoon camping , mountainbiking and driving around the Western Cape and Little Karoo in South Africa. It was marvellous. Almost autumn, fruits being harvested from orchards, madly in love,fit and healthy and with such promise in the air. Heady stuff, really.

I bought my first piece of art in a town called Carlitzdorp from the artist, Tim Robsen. It was a watercolour, fabulously rendered, of the very landscape that was the backdrop to my happiness. He invited us into his gallery and served tea . We sat on his couch , we chatted to us about our lives , his life and his work.He was particularly interested in Charles's work as an oncologist. I was fascinated with his house. A few front rooms were galleries, another housed a guest artist and friend of his, his framing equipment stood in another room and the smallest room housed his bed and books.  We did not know he had only just been diagnosed with cancer and would die within the year. We are emotionally tied to the painting for reasons both happy and sad, as are we with the place.

So you see, so much emotion is tied up in how I experience a place that just rendering it accurately or realistically is not what I am aiming for. The sentiment needs to be expressed. If I see it in a painting, then I am happy with it, proportion, perspective and colour be damned!

So this is what I feel about that place. The aloe's pushing out of a rocky outcrop. the farms dry and yet somehow producing crops from god knows what sustenance, the  roads we cycled on, hard and dry, the views that left me quiet within.

Klein Karoo with aloes
30 x 60 cm
oil on canvas


  1. Love it! The painting and the sentiment, so evocative of a place and time, beautiful...

  2. Thanks, Em.Am painting from the heart a lot more, these days.


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