Monday, November 18, 2013

Three-artist land Art session in Riebeeck Kasteel

Three artists - Stefanie Schoeman, Loni Dräger and Janet Botes - met up in Riebeeck Kasteel to respond to the landscape in a creative and respectful way. The site was chosen by Loni, a local resident artist, and overlooks the beautiful Cederberg Mountains to the North.

The dried seedpods from the vine-like plant that were used (which is not an indigenous species), produces a rattling sound when the wind shakes them against each other - this being the inspiration behind the strung vine rope between two singular trees that grow right next to the area where the plants grow. 

The location was chosen so the seeds of the plant are not spread even further onto the mountain side by the artists. This creative meeting is planned to be the first of similar meetups in the landscape of the Western Cape. 

An additional collaborative piece created in conversation between Stefanie Schoeman and Janet Botes:

CALL FOR PROPOSALS: Cheng Long Wetlands International Environmental Art Project

2014 Cheng Long Wetlands International Environmental Art Project
“Fishing for a Better Environment”

Artists from all countries are invited to send a proposal for a site-specific outdoor sculpture installation that will celebrate the seafood producers and fishermen of Cheng Long area and raise awareness about environmental issues relating to seafood production, the main livelihood of Cheng Long residents.  The artworks will be created during a 25-day artist in residency in Cheng Long, a small rural village near the southwestern coast of Taiwan in Kouhu Township,Yunlin County.

Deadline for Entries: January 18, 2014
Artists will be selected and notified by February 17, 2014

Installation and Residency in Cheng Long, Kouhu Township, Taiwan:
April 10 (artists arrive) – May 5, 2014 (artists depart)

Dates of the Exhibition:
May 2, 2014 (opening ceremony), May 3 and 4 – Opening weekend activities with the artists.  The exhibition will stay on display through 2015, and we hope the artworks can continue to be enjoyed into the next year.

For more information, photos from previous residency projects, and application forms:

Friday, November 1, 2013

ClemenGold sponsoring Site_Specific is one of Site_Specific's official sponsors towards the 2015 International Land Art Biennale. Their support, along with the many other sponsors and partners, are instrumental in the existence of the project that relies entirely on generous donations and contributions.

Site_Specific held its first International Land Art Biennale in 2011 with very limited resources, and it has since seen enormous growth in participation and support. The project has attracted a lot of attention internationally, and is the first official land art focused organisation in Africa. Under the watchful guide of it's creative director and world-respected land artist, South Africa's own Strijdom van der Merwe, Site_Specific has excelled as a project not only on the visual arts front in terms of land art, but also in terms of community participation from the whole of the BITOU municipality region in 2011/13. Everyone has shown enthusiasm and eager involvement, and the project attracts highly respected artists locally and internationally.

ClemenGold's participation was officially launched at the Aardklop festival with Anni Snyman and the Site_Specific team creating a ClemenGold land art installation.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Ahmad Nadalian from Iran journeys & creates in South Africa

Ahmad Nadalian created some of his incredible sand prints, and several other art pieces, on a journey through South Africa. Here is one of the sand prints - a modified recycling symbol, the design created by Simon Bannister.

See more at and

See Simon's work at

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Walking in Circles, Imke Rust

As I've mentioned on a previous blog post, Imke Rust is not a South African artist. However, I feel that her work in Namibia speaks in the same lines than the work and projects initiated by South African artists like myself. And today I'd like to share her video for her exhibition Walking in Circles with you - a very interesting piece due to its meditative quality and her intention or message behind it.  Read more about this "Meditation On Life and Change" on Imke's website.

Walking in Circles Video by Imke Rust18 second clip looped and presented as a 3 minute-piece

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Hannelie Coetzee: Quartz Line & Joburg Walkabout

Hannelie Coetzee made a “Quartz Line Drawing” on Lookout Point, Plettenberg Bay, during the 2013 Site_Specific Land Art Biennale. It was about 100m2. Reney Warrington made a beautiful video of the process.

"The quartz lines run parallel to the ocean, emerging and disappearing at the landscapes mercy. I was drawn to where the earth swallows it. I attempted to re-connect the same line as it surfaces on the other side. Connecting the lines with clay gave me the time to think strategically about my practice  I was drawing a mind map, following nature’s logic rather than my own. I was learning from nature. The mind map will be applied in my GIBS SECP studies connecting networks to roll out collaborative future projects The painted lines became part of the landscape as soon as the first drizzle dissolved it. One could easily walk by and wonder if it was an artwork at all. When I have the opportunity to listen to nature at length I am reminded of the fact that we think we know better. People often ask me if it is therapeutic. It is not. It’s a vivid reality check that we have to re-learn how to use our intellect. We have the capacity to solve the problems we have caused. When I make a site specific artwork, I take time to strategize other functional and/or collaborative artworks that addresses environmental issues."
- Hannelie Coetzee

Walkabout with Hannelie Coetzee during the Joburg Art Fair

Hannelie will conduct two Walkabouts around the Maboneng Neighbourhood during the Joburg Art Fair weekend:

  • 4pm on Friday the 27th September
  • 4pm on Saturday the 28th September

You will leave from her Fox Street mural (between Kruger and Berea) which will be completed during these two days. If you want to join, RSVP as soon as possible to The walkabouts are free, but you are encouraged to donate funds which will go towards research for new artworks. Hannelie's current or planned work include a functional environmental land art project based on filtering acid mine drainage contaminated water. (Find out more)

Friday, September 6, 2013

Eden to Addo Corridor & Land Art Route

At the start of the 2013 Site_Specific Land Art Biennale week, on 11 August, the second artwork on the Eden to Addo Land Art Route - "Calling the Herd" by Strijdom van der Merwe - was unveiled.

"This exciting interactive land art work in the Keurbooms Corridor consists of several trumpet-like funnels combined in a tree shape. Visitors can blow these trumpets - recalling the sounds of elephants on their ancient migration route across the mountains. Symbolically this art work relates to the three elephant sculptures of Aartmoeders - calling them (and all humans that can hear the call)  to join in the Eden to Addo journey towards re-establishing nature's ancient routes for all species." - from the Site_Specific website

Eden to Addo is a conservation initiative that aims to create a living conservation corridor between the greater Garden Route National Park and Addo Elephant National Park some 400km to the east. In essence, and in layman's terms, they are hoping to place the corridors as plasters that heals the landscape - re-establishing migration patterns of animals, which in turn supports the biodiversity and health of the plants, trees and water in the region.

How does Land Art fit into this?

The corridor will be linked with land art pieces across various mountain ranges and biomes, symbolically and creatively linking the different communities, areas and other aspects of the entire landscape. The project is aimed at raising funds for conservation, at supporting the arts and also creating opportunities for the communities in the area. 

"By creating a platform for the exploration of art and ecology in SA, we aim to help the communities living within the corridor to explore the nature of their relationship with their environment. Hikers on the 400km Eden to Addo Great Corridor Hike held in September each year, will have an opportunity to enjoy art on route. And those that cannot hike will have the opportunity to drive from one land art piece to the next in time to come, creating a tourism attraction with its associated benefits for the landowners within the Eden to Addo Corridor." from the Eden to Addo website

While listening to the passionate and informative speech by Eden to Addo's Joan Berning at the unveiling of "Calling the Herd", I got the impression that the project is about MOVEMENT - the movement of animals, the movement of plants across the landscapes, the movement of water through catchment areas towards the rivers, and the movement of humans in harmony with nature. 

The first artwork on the Land Art Route - "Aartmoeders" by Simon Bannister in the Robberg Corridor has met the aims and ideals of the initiative in profound ways, especially in terms of community involvement. The artwork has become a focal point and meeting point for people to admire the surrounding fynbos and wild rocky coast. It has created an opportunity for the people of Kranshoek to guide tourists to the art piece.

I look forward to see and experience more about this ambitious and incredible initiative wherein art, nature and communities connect in powerful and beautiful ways. 

View this map, showing planned artworks and sites, at

Monday, August 19, 2013

Site_Specific 2013: a huge success

The second Site_Specific International Land Art Biennale has definitely left a mark in the Plett landscape in the shape of thought-provoking artworks and installations. I also feel that it has left its mark on the minds and hearts of everyone who was part of the event in some way. It was such an incredible week, with a diverse set of experiences and opportunities to interact, to create and to learn. Here's some glimpses, mostly featuring images from the Site_Specific Pinterest and Facebook pages:

Artwork by Wilma Cruise. Photograph by Brenda Witte.

Kim Goodwin's 'Earth Pods' on Lookout Beach. Photograph by Chris Reinders

Running fences. Created by the communities around Plett 
as a project by the Boitumelo Sewing Project, facilitated by Erica Lüttich

Lungiswa Gqunta's work. Photograph by Jonathan vd Walt

Detail of the installation or 'beach mansion' by Andrea Cristoforetti

Flowing lines in mud on sand, by Janet Botes.

Artwork created during the Eco Land Art Walk from Nature's Valley to
Keurbooms Beach, organised by Simon Max Bannister and Galeo Saintz.

Part of "Soliloquy" by Annie le Roux

Part/process of the large-scale artwork, or 'Sand Bridge',
by Cornelia Konrads, from Germany

Created by PC Janse van Rensburg, during Andrew van der Merwe's
Beach Calligraphy Workshop

Andrew van der Merwe's Beach Calligraphy Workshop resulted in many more beautiful sand creations by Site_Specific artists and other workshop participants. This was one of the many ways in which the public could get involved with the event, and currently the Photography competition is still ongoing! Find out more at To read more about the artists, visit:

Friday, July 19, 2013

Land Art by Annie le Roux

I very recently became aware of the work of Anni le Roux, a very inspiring and nature-connected artist based in Plettenberg Bay - which is where I'll get the chance to meet her in person during the Site_Specific Land Art Biennale next month! 

I fell in love with the simplicity in Annie's work. She creates simple forms, primarily circular shapes, from natural materials found in the landscape, and each seems to echo the essence of the landscape but also the universe - atoms in space, a flare of energy, each unique and dynamic. Simple. Beautiful. Authentic.

"Annie le Roux’s work echoes the simplicity of natural cells. Using natural shapes and textures found on site in discrete subtle colour combinations, it is reminiscent of pre-historic mark making and enigmatic rock art of the Khoi-San. Mother Earth and her effect on the human psyche is the source of Annie’s inspiration. She sees Nature as her mentor, muse and healer."

It is only in the primordial landscape of the wild where silence, smells, wind, tides, sun, dust and rain still has a profound transcendent and palpable impact on our awareness and state of being. This consciousness in turn accentuates our vulnerability, nurtures our humility, and fosters the tender sense of our human limitations. It is from this fragile space where I am inspired to start my work” - Annie le Roux

To see more of her work, go to

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Site_Specific LAND ART 2013

Join us! Viewing of Land Art is free!

This year’s Site_Specific International Land Art Biennale (every two years) will take place 10 - 17 August 2013 on the beaches of Plettenberg Bay

Launch Event

On Sunday 11 August, Strijdom van der Merwe’s permanent work in the Eden to Addo Land Art Route will be unveiled. The work “Calling the Herd” is a lovely interactive piece that symbolically calls the last remaining wild elephants in the Eden forest to once again tread the ancient migration routes and join their family in the Addo National Park. Everyone is welcome to join us at 10:30 at the intersection of the R339 and the R340 where the work will be unveiled, and then to travel with us to Aartmoeders (the stone art work) at Kranshoek. The Kranshoek Griqua community will be laying on a traditional basaar with food and music. Come and enjoy a special day with the invited artists from Korea, Germany and South Africa!

Land Artists at work and Public Lectures
Tuesday 13 August to Thursday 15 August

All Land Art Enthusiasts are invited to witness the art making processes on the beaches of PLETT! and to join the artists in the evenings at the Beacon Island Resort for the free public lectures where the invited artists will discuss their work.

Visit to browse through the exciting workshops that are on offer: Beach Calligraphy, Land Art Photography and a fully catered Eco-Art walk from Nature's Valley to Keurboomstrand. You too can play an ACTIVE part in making this Biennale the best, and PLETT THE LAND ART DESTINATION in Africa!

Unveiling of Site_Specific work

Friday 15 August - Art work will be ready for viewing from 12:00 onwards. On Friday evening there will be a Land Art Party at the Beacon Island Resort. Buy your ticket for the party at the Beacon Island Resort Reception, and join the artists in this celebration of Land Art!

For the full programme and more info, go to

Monday, July 15, 2013

New work by Strijdom van der Merwe

Look at these beautiful works by Strijdom van der Merwe, created during two international art festivals during July! Make sure to see his work and visit Plettenberg Bay during our own land art biennale here in South Africa - Site_Specific is happening 10-17 August on the Plettenberg Bay beaches! For more information go to

Fragile Interventions for the exhibition SWIM 
made on site as part of the Malta Arts Festival 
July 2013, Strijdom van der Merwe

Art works done in the landscape on site as Festival Artist for the Norsk Fjell Festival.
Norway July 2013, Strijdom van der Merwe

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Experiences as a land artist by Simon Max Bannister

A presentation about adventures as a land artist and how it compels you to experience the ecology of place. 

Date: Tuesday 16 July 2013
Time: 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Place: Phakalane – centre for living ritual, 12 Hunters Way, Hout Bay
Cost: By donation
RSVP: Claudia 083 663 7401 or

Recent Work: "Compression" Afrika Burn 2013 (image by JonX Pillemar)

Simon Max Bannister has been consistently creating sculptural artworks that live in the outdoors. Be it earth, stone, leaf, water, light, shadow and even plastic, he grasps the energy and moulds it into a necessary and intriguing artistic dialogue. It is ultimately the creative processes of nature that inspire his creative endeavours. He has participated in events such as Site_Specific, Afrika Burns, Infecting the City and the National Arts Festival. While keeping a diversity in materials, his style is unique and his passionate creativity is in tune with the climate of our challenging times. He is currently based at Londolozi Game Reserve as artist in residence.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Beautiful new work by Strijdom van der Merwe

"Fragile Interventions' Art Works by Strijdom van der Merwe for the exhibition SWIM as part of the Malta Festival of Arts 1 - 30 July 2013

'Diaspora' Art work by Strijdom van der Merwe for the city of Rovaniemi, Finland as part of the X-Border Art Biennale 2013.

"The inspiration for this work come from the geological phenomenon where rocks move in long tracks along a smooth valley floor without human intervention. Crossing borders and place themselves in a new environment the same as people would scattered away from an established or ancestral homeland and settle in more than one location.
On each of these stones words are installed that reflect diaspora, movement crossing migration etc. The inspiration for these words come from the philosopher Aristotle who's school of thinkers where known as Peripatetic. This school was known for teaching across all borders and carry the message of knowledge where ever they went. Not bound to one specific place.
As solid and as heavy as rocks can be they can move from one place to another place and across borders as the ice age have also carry large boulders across the borders of continents and deposit them in different places. 
Although we as humans like to draw borders with in which we feel safe to operate. Nature know no borders and will carry thoughts and ideas to where ever it is needed or been deposit."
- Strijdom van der Merwe

Don't miss the unveiling of Strijdom van der Merwe's second work along the Eden to Addo Land Art Route, 'Calling the Herd' at the opening ceremony for the second Site_Specific Land Art Biennale in Plettenberg Bay, on 11 August 2013. For more info, keep an eye on  (the time table is updated regularly as the events and time details of the programme is confirmed)