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