PLETTENBERG BAY • 2013 • SITE_SPECIFIC LAND ART BIENNALE
TWO QUESTIONS interview series
CORNELIA KONRADS (Germany) CORNELIA KONRADS (Germany) was born in 1957 in Wuppertal/Germany and studied philosophy and cultural science. She has been working as a freelance artist since 1998. Her focus is on site specific sculptures – indoors and outdoors; temporary and permanent for public spaces; sculpture parks and private gardens. Konrads has had various expositions, residencies and commissions in Europe, Asia, Australia, and America. These are some of her main achievements – 2012: Schweizerische Triennale der Skulptur Bad Ragaz (Switzerland); 2011: Sculptor on Campus - Visiting Sculptor Program, Cal. State University, Bakersfield (USA); 2010: Public Art Commission for the N8 Cashel - Mitchelston Road, Cahir (Ireland); 2009: Artist in Residence, Aomori Contemporary Art Center, Aomori (Japan); 2008: Southern Forest Sculpture Walk Northcliffe (Australia).
WONGIL JEON (South-Korea) was born in 1961. Since he started life as an artist in 1983, Jeon continues to work within nature – attempting to untangle nature’s order through painting and drawing methods lead by the formative imagination within himself and his body’s sense, creating natural art to work along with nature. He has been expressing various connections with nature in different media and currently is expressing a reminiscence of time – a conceptual documentation through painting and photography of the aspects of nature that he encounters in his studio, which is a secluded garden in Ansung. Jeon taught at the college of art as an artist as well as an exhibition designer and art theoretician. Currently he is acting as a director of the YATOO International Project.
HANNELIE COETZEE is a Johannesburg-based professional photographer and visual artist. Her approach to photography is a documentary one. She has worked as a photographer for more than twenty years and is represented by agencies in New York and Germany. Her transition into art, sculpture to be exact, was to be expected. She went from photographing stone formations and scars in the landscape to collecting stone, creating urban and land artworks, mosaics and ultimately stone sculpture.
WILMA CRUISE is a South African sculptor and visual artist. Working mainly with fired clay on a life size scale she has had sixteen solo exhibitions, curated others and completed a number of site specific works including the national monument to the women of South Africa in Pretoria and the Memorial to the Slaves in Cape Town.
ERYNNE EWART-PHIPPS "My creative process is developed by observing a sites' natural materials and manipulating them into a sculptured form, deliberate and conflicting within the organic surroundings. These intentional manipulations reflect man’s presence within the environment, yet once commemorated via photograph can be easily forgotten within nature’s ever-changing process. Non-permanence is vital to the overall notion I wish to create, and the impact permanence has within an interacting and adapting environment. All creation has a duration, I only wish to emphasise it."
GORDON FROUD has been actively involved in the South African and international art world as artist, educator, curator and gallerist for the last 30 years. He has shown on hundreds of solo and group shows in South Africa and overseas and has served on various arts committees throughout South Africa. He has judged many of the important Art competitions from local to national levels in South Africa. Froud graduated with a BA(FA)Hons from the University of Witwatersrand in 1987, a Higher education Diploma from the same university in 1987 and a master’s degree in Sculpture from the University of Johannesburg in 2009 where he runs the Sculpture department as a senior lecturer. He has lectured at this department since 2004 and manages the third year undergraduate program. He has taught continuously at school and tertiary level in South Africa and in London since 1990. Froud directed gordart Gallery in Johannesburg from 2003 to 2009 where he showcased the work of new, up and coming artists. He regularly shows on more than 20 exhibitions a year. Last year he was represented in ‘The Rainbow Nation’ sculpture exhibition in The Hague, Holland and was the first recipient of the Site Specific land art residency in Plettenberg Bay. Apart from showing on 30 other shows last year, Froud has curated 2 shows that will travel SA over the next 2 years. He showed work internationally in Holland, the USA and France in 2012.
DAVID JONES is an artist-lecturer in the School of Music, Art and Design at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. He heads the department of Studio Arts and is engaged with Community structures working at rehabilitating the Inner City. This allows a synthesis of Public Art with in the landscape of the City.
MARCUS NEUSTETTER is a Johannesburg-based artist and cultural activist, reflecting critically and playfully on his context through process-driven production at the intersection of art, science and technology. Following the completion of his Masters Degree in Fine Arts from the University of the Witwatersrand in 2000 his cross-disciplinary production has led to exhibitions, site specific installations, virtual interventions and socially engaged projects internationally (marcusneustetter.com). Neustetter has also been producing projects in partnership with Stephen Hobbs as 'The Trinity Session' and in their collaborative capacity as Hobbs/Neustetter (onair.co.za).
BLESSING NGOBENI "I am 28 years old, and live & work in Johannesburg. I studied at Newtown’s Artist Proof Studio (2007), and for the past 13 years I have been involved with art. I am the winner of the Reinhold Cassirer Award (2012) and had my first solo exhibition show at gallery Momo (2012). I am currently nominated and short-listed for the Mail and Guardian 200 Young South Africans, and am very pleased to be part of the Site_Specific project. I worked for David Krut Publishing at the Johannesburg Art Gallery, and was also a facilitator teaching the youth at Michaelis Art Library. I worked as a freelancer for Red-Pepper Pictures, and I've exhibited in several group shows around Johannesburg"
WALTER OLTMANN "I live and work in Johannesburg as an artist and teach in the Fine Arts division at the University of the Witwatersrand. My main area of creative focus is in sculpture, and more particularly in fabricating woven wire forms. I use the linear qualities of wire to create forms and surfaces through techniques that parallel handcrafts. My drawings and prints are also closely related to my sculptural works."
Plettenberg Bay Artists
STEPHEN ROSIN was born in Rhodesia in 1975. He has a B.tech degree from the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University School of Art and Design, graduating in 1999. He is the winner of the prestigious Absa l'Atelier competition in 2009 and recently received a nomination for best visual arts exhibition at the 2013 KKNK festival.
MALCOLM SOLOMON is a sculptor born (1968) and living in Plettenberg Bay. His sculptures range from classical to abstract modern art, and he has worked in a wide range of media – including bronze, wood, stone and sand, as well as working with furniture, paint finishes, sign-writing, murals, sketching and painting. Solomon spent four years in America making customised hand-carved furniture and front doors, and experimenting with mould-making and a wide range of casting methods. In 2002 he discovered bronze which is now his favourite material to work with. Solomon is deeply influenced by the energies and patterns of the nature and life that surrounds him, and feels compelled to bring awareness to it's beauty. In 2006 he opened his studio gallery THE KEYHOLE on Main St in Plettenberg Bay which launched his sculpting career. His more recent work is stylised, abstract and organic where attention is given to contrasting textures and planes and the effect of light on moving surfaces. The use of negative spaces and implied shapes complete his forms. Solomon explores his personal experiences and observations of life, and his acute awareness of our vulnerable presence on Earth.
Young Artist from Eden Award
LUNGISWA GQUNTA is an intern at Nmb-city, a design/events/project management company who manage the Port Elizabeth Athenaeum. She has worked on public sculptures for the city (conversations with the queen), and is currently working with carved and burned totems. Her interests are the intersection between the traditional and the urban contemporary, and what this means in terms of finding her niche as a young female artist. Lungiswa is a hard-working, passionate, curious and skilled young artist from Port Elizabeth and belongs to the born free generation!
Site_Specific organisers / artists
JANET BOTES has been involved in the HumanEarth exhibitions, curating the 2012 Green Art exhibition at the Green Expo, and performing at the National Arts Festival. Janet's work is predominantly inspired by the natural world and personal experiences. Through her work she hopes to help inspire a reconnection between people, nature and the creativity inherent in everyone. As an artist she engages in land art, drawing, mixed media, painting, photography and assemblage sculpture.
ERICA LüTTICH trained as a film editor, and is an acclaimed photographer. Erica’s art making process means that she gets involved and explores, investigates and teaches new techniques and craft ideas together with crafters. She has recently created "FENCES" at the Site_Specific Ebenezer residency in Plettenberg Bay. This artwork will be installed during the Site_Specific biennale in August. She has made major contributions to the outreach component of Site_Specific. In her own words: "The ability to collaborate on an artwork only has validity if it challenges the crafter and the viewer, thus the ideas of each project must be sufficiently researched. Through the creative process of making, the artwork becomes defined and the working together of many hands and hearts makes a clear path that can be expressed by each individual and the intentions can then be communicated to the public."
ANNI SNYMAN & PC JANSE VAN RENSBURG are a brother and sister team who have been exploring site specific works in various landscapes in South Africa and abroad since 2009. PC Janse van Rensburg brings his experience as a professional architect and visual artist to their land art collaborations. Anni Snyman works in various media ranging from traditional prints, photography, digitally manipulated images and animations, to three dimensional installations and sculptures. She actively seeks collaborations with other artists, and has organised several 'Kunstellasies' – juxtapositions of different creative disciplines in public spaces (annisnyman.co.za). In 2011 she founded Site_Specific with Strijdom van der Merwe and Heather Greig (sitespecific.org.za).
STRIJDOM VAN DER MERWE uses the materials provided by the chosen site. He explains that it is a process of working with the natural world - using sand, water, wood, rocks and so forth. His sculptural forms take shape in relation to the landscape. Exhibitions and commissions on invitation were done in South Korea, Turkey, Belgium, France, Sweden, Lithuania, Japan, USA, Australia, Germany, Kenya, England the Netherlands, USA and Italy. He held many personal exhibitions in various art galleries in the past years and his work has been bought by numerous private and public collectors locally and abroad. His list of achievements include: Recipient of the Jackson Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant; Medal of Honor from the South African Academy of Arts and Science; Winner of the It's LIQUID International Contest - First Edition 2012. Italia, for Sculpture and Installation; Member of the curatorial panel for World Design Capital Cape Town 2014; Recipient of the Prince Claus Grant Amsterdam The Netherlands; Nominated for the Daimler Chrysler award for sculpture in Public Spaces 2008.