- As a returning judge, what new insights do you bring to the 2018 PPC Imaginarium Awards?
I intend to keep an open mind and explore every avenue open to me with each work. On that note, I suggest that the individuals entering be more aware of how the artist statement or the conceptual statement might help or hinder their work. I suggest re-reading the statement and getting a friend to read it and make suggestions.
- What do you hope to see from this year’s entrants?
I hope to see work that really pushes the boundaries of the material and is technically brilliant.
- What work and/or projects are you involved in at the moment?
I am currently writing my PhD in Fine Arts. This year I am focusing on the completion my thesis.
- Two big themes in your work are fear and anxiety. In your view, what themes/issues are South African artists grappling with in 2018?
Artists may well be preoccupied with issues like the shortage of basic human needs, or things that we take for granted – such as water. Perhaps they are concerned with the changing political climate as well.
- Is sculpture your preferred medium? If so, what about sculpture drew you to it originally?
Yes, sculpture is my preferred medium. I remember wanting to specialise in painting but whatever I made ended up three-dimensional. I am especially interested in sculptural installations. It felt as though sculpture just opened up the options I was looking for. I wanted to melt wax, cut up blankets, pour resin, dig in the ground and engage with various materials and processes. Sculpture allows you to do that and more besides.
- What is the main challenge you face as an artist in the South African arts industry?
At times, I think it may be a sense of isolation. That is especially true of the Free State. I wish it were easier to visit all the exhibitions in the country, or to visit other artists in their studios.
- Apart from the PPC Imaginarium Awards, what platforms or avenues contribute to the growth of art and design in South Africa?
The Art departments at universities (as well as many other departments) contribute to this growth as they impact many (but not all) individuals working in the arts. All the art galleries and other contests help too. And then there are the ‘experts’ in other fields – those who work with students as well as full-time artists. They may not be ‘platforms’ or ‘avenues’ per se, but their work contributes a great deal to the growth of the arts in South Africa.
- How is South African art helping to shape the country in terms of the social, cultural and political landscapes?
The arts often communicate ideas visually as opposed to through text or speech (Text and speech could be used visually as well.) Visual communication is a form that spans many boundaries and impacts life in various ways. Willem Boshoff is one artist whose work has shaped the country in terms of the social, cultural and political landscapes.