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SASA 2019 AGM and Drawing Competition

The 116th SASA AGM was held on Thursday 28 February, at the home of our society, the Athenaeum in Newlands.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As has become tradition, SASA Fellow, Solly Gutman very kindly agreed to chair the meeting, doing a great job and adding gravitas to the formal part of the evening, as he smoothly worked his way through the set agenda.

Our president, Audrey Innes, gave a slide-show presentation on the past year’s activities of the society and, looking back on it all, it’s quite amazing how much we fitted in!

 

 

 

 

 

Mike Forrester delivered the treasurer’s report and the council was elected. There was a call for nominations for prospective council members to be put forward and any points of concern to be raised, but none were, so we must assume our members are content with the status quo.

 

 

 

 

 

With the dry half of the meeting out of the way, we could get down to the real reason we came – the annual drawing competition, the theme of which for this year, was “Water”.

There were some lovely entries to choose from, but the loveliest of all was “Church Street”, by Marcelle Lyons, which won first prize and the trophy. Well done Marcelle.

 

 

 

In second place was Liz Pearson with “Submerged” and third was Avril Retief’s “The Rescue”. All beautiful work and worthy winners.

A big thanks to “The Deckle Edge” for donating vouchers for the prizes and to “Artland” who gave us a very good deal on their imported sketchbooks.

 

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First SASA Members’ Meeting for 2019

We had a record attendance for our members’ meeting held on Thursday 31 January and the hall at the Athenaeum was full to bursting.

Five of the category winners from last year’s annual selection weekend – Helena Jordaan (oils), Jeremy Day (acrylics), Christopher Reid (pastel), Penny Steynor (sculpture) and Pam Quinlan (watercolour), as well as SASA Fellow, Solly Gutman (scratchboard) – agreed to come and do a demonstration for us.

The crowd was fascinated by the progress of the pieces being worked on during the evening and by the diversity of the different media. The artists were extremely generous with their knowledge and their secrets, answering every question members put to them as fully as possible, giving very useful tips for simplifying and beautifying their own work.

 

 

 

 

 

As artists, our growth and learning is continuous and we are very fortunate to have those who are willing to share, as they did this evening.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Members were invited to feel for themselves the scraping of the tools on Solly’s scratchboard and the chiselling away of the stone at Penny’s sculpture demo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Even those artists who were a little apprehensive about working with such an “up-close” audience, were pleasantly surprised at how much they enjoyed the interest shown and the sharing of skills.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks to everyone involved, for a most enjoyable and interesting evening.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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31 January – Demo with SASA Annual Prizewinners

At the SASA monthly members’ meeting, on 31 January, we will be treated to a demo by five of the prize winners from last year’s annual selection weekend, who, together with two of our “fellows”, will be showing us some of their winning techniques. A meeting not to be missed! See the January newsletter for details.

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SASA End of Year Function

 

 

 

 

 

The SASA end of year function was held last night – Thursday 29 November – at the Athenaeum. As is our tradition, the “Eleanor Palmer Competition” was the highlight of the evening. This is the one “in-house” competition where there are not too many constraints regarding your entry – one original piece per member, any subject, any medium – and we had some truly beautiful entries to choose from.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our members strolled around the hall, plateful of snacks in one hand and glass in the other, studying the paintings and making their choices. While the votes were being tallied, we were kept amused by the wonderful art quiz, compiled by Christine Cherry-Jones, which not only taxed our brains and history of art knowledge, but also provoked much hilarity. Thanks Christine, for your hard work in putting it all together.

 

 

 

 

 

The winners of the competition were: first – Marcelle Lyons, for her painting “Newlands Forest Winter”, second – Laura Wenman, with “Always Remembered” and in third place – Chantelle Van Zyl, with “Beach Buddy” Well done you three!

 

 

 

 

Though bordering on chaos at times, it was a wonderfully festive and light-hearted evening, with plenty of wine and a great spread of snacks – thanks everyone who contributed a plateful, it was really enjoyed and appreciated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A very Happy Christmas to those who celebrate it and happy everything else to those who don’t.

Have a wonderful holiday and we’ll see you in the new year.

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October Members’ Meeting – Sonja Frenz Demo

Sonja Frenz, well known for her charcoal and pastel wooded landscapes, did a wonderful demo for us at the October SASA members’ meeting on Thursday the 25th of October.

 

 

 

 

 

Using charcoal powder and black and white pastels in all their shapes and forms, Sonja showed us how her unique technique can be adapted to suit other subject matter – for this demo, portraiture in particular.

The hall at the Athenaeum was packed that evening and everyone enjoyed themselves immensely, watching enthralled, as the beautiful portrait emerged.

Sonja kept us all entertained with her down to earth commentary and gave us a lot of tips and helpful hints to make the materials work successfully.

This is a wonderful new take on working with pastel and charcoal and we all went home inspired and ready to experiment.

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Harry Johnson Sculpture Demo

On Thursday 27 September, we once again gathered at the Athenaeum for the SASA members’ meeting and we were in for a treat!

 

 

 

 

Master sculptor, Harry Johnson was there with his special wax and his special talents to demonstrate his amazing sculpture technique. During the course of the evening he told us a bit about his history and a lot about the wax and the method he uses to create his pieces.

Starting with a vaguely cat-shaped clump, with a few additions and removals of chunks of the wonderfully soft, grey wax, we saw a cheetah materialise before our eyes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A portrait of a strong young woman was transformed into a dejected figure, using a slight rearrangement of arms and tilt of the head, showing how feelings and perceptions can be altered by mere gesture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To demonstrate how easy it is to correct mistakes, or change proportions when using wax, to the horrified gasps of his audience, Harry sliced the nose off a sculpted face, pared away a layer and stuck it back on again…..or poked a stick up it’s nostrils to make it “breathe”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harry’s work is internationally recognised and admired, in ten years he has created more sculptures than any other South African artist has in a lifetime, yet he still made time to spend with us. Thank you Harry, for a truly fascinating evening.

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August SASA Members’ Meeting

The SASA members’ meeting for August was held on Thursday the 30th at our usual venue, the Athenaeum in Newlands.

 

 

 

 

 

We were fortunate to have two of our selection day judges – Liesl Hartmann, head of education at Zeitz MOCCA and Virginia MacKenny, Associate Professor of painting at Michaelis School of Art – on hand, to give a critique on some of the work that didn’t make the cut for the Annual exhibition.

 

 

 

 

 

It was a relatively small group of members who attended the meeting, but those who were there were richly rewarded. Because there weren’t so very many paintings to look at, our judges were able to spend more time on each work presented and give a more in-depth assessment.

The criticism was constructive and very useful – pertinent to all those present, not just the artist whose artwork was being discussed – and much note-taking was done throughout the evening.

 

 

 

 

 

The thought-provoking comments and suggestions generated many a “light-bulb moment” causing us to re-think the way we looked at the work in front of us as well as our own and everyone went home with a head full of ideas for improvement.

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you Virginia and Liesl, for an exceptionally enlightening and entertaining evening.