On Friday 18 January, we had a very different Kommetjie plein air encounter! The long – usually white, sunlit – beach was shrouded in cloud and the iconic lighthouse was very well camouflaged in that cloudy background.
The day started off overcast, with sunny patches and was surprisingly chilly for this time of year, yet still a few brave souls came out to do some painting.
It turned into quite an adventure, ending with the intrepid few painting in the rain. Far from feeling disheartened, our artists found the experience quite invigorating and some exciting works were produced.
Thank you, Johan Pieterse, for organising it for us and thanks Kommetjie – we’ll be back!
Our second art in the park and final SASA exhibition for the year took place on 24 November at our usual venue, Rondebosch Park.
Here, on the corner of Campground and Sandown Roads, we have found the perfect home for this event – it is convenient for locals to stroll up, with their families in tow. It’s also very visible from the road, which attracts passing trade, swelling the number of our faithful followers, who come not only for the wonderful atmosphere, but in hope of a beautiful bargain or two as well.
We had a steady stream of customers throughout the day and good sales figures by the end of it – people making a day of it, lunching under the trees, ensuring our food vendors also had a good day and browsing around the stalls.
The beautiful space means that dogs can be included in the family outing – even more incentive to come and have a look!
Thanks to our team of organisers and all their hard work, that’s another satisfying and successful art in the park under our belts. See you next year!
We had a very successful plein air outing to Chart Farm – a favourite venue amongst our members and also the CAS members who were invited to join us – on Friday 30 November. It was a beautifully sunny day and everyone came armed with big hats and sunscreen.
Magnificent views surrounded us, from vineyards and mountains to interesting architecture and close-ups of roses. We spread out under the shade of the trees and all through the rose gardens, where the scented blooms added another sensory dimension.
Everyone had wonderful subject-matter choices to make and some just sat for a while, taking it all in before they began.
At lunchtime, we were welcomed at the coffee shop and then there were cut flowers to be bought and the farm stall to be visited.
The day was enjoyed by all and this group of happy artists will definitely be back for more. Thanks, Johan Pieterse, for organising it for us.
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.
It’s “Plein Air Season” again and Johan Pieterse organised our first outing to the beautiful Buitenverwachting Wine Estate in Constantia, on Friday the 26th October.
This magnificent venue has a lot to offer in terms of choices of subject matter, with it’s historic Cape Dutch architecture, lush vineyards and roaming roosters. Or if it’s the little details you’re looking for, there are plenty of those to be discovered too.
We had a glorious morning capturing it all on paper and, lured by the scent of fresh roasted coffee, gathered at “The Beanery” at lunchtime.
These plein air outings have become very popular with our members and Buitenverwachting is one of the most favoured locations. Look out for the next outing, which will be sometime in November and spend a lovely day outside, connecting with other artists and topping up your reservoirs of inspiration.
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.
The second of our members’ exhibitions for 2018 opened on Monday the first of October in the Richard Crowie Hall, Kirstenbosch. The hanging of the work was smoothly and efficiently executed by our band of willing volunteers and every painting was placed in the perfect spot.
Laura Wenman – one of SASA’s newly named “senior fellows” – opened the exhibition with a sincerely heartfelt and uplifting speech.
The crowd was not as big as usual, due to an unexpectedly chilly evening, as well as it’s being held on a Monday, but even so, sales got off to a good start – a very good sign for the rest of the exhibition….and for once there was even wine left over! 🙂
The exhibition finishes tomorrow – Thursday 11 October – a short, but very successful run, living up to expectations and making about a hundred thousand Rand in sales for a lot of very happy artists.
There’s still time to pop in for last minute purchases – we’ll start dismantling it all at about four o’clock – so get there if you can.
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.
At the SASA September members’ meeting, we have great pleasure in welcoming as our guest, Harry Johnson, master sculptor. He will be demonstrating his exciting sculpture technique. Get there if you possibly can!
13 September was the last of this year’s scheduled Thursday evening life drawing sessions at the Athenaeum and due to lack of interest, probably not to be continued in the new year.
These sessions take a lot of organisational as well as practical input from the council members whose portfolio it is and have proved “non-cost-effective” for SASA. So, for the few who actually got there, sorry – we tried! We will, however still be having our usual five Saturday morning slots at the Newlands Scout Hall in June/July next year.
Andy was our model for the evening – thanks Andy, for stepping in at such short notice.
We were a very small group, but had a good time, with much experimentation and sharing of equipment going on, as well as much concentration, resulting in the need for much relaxation between poses!…..and some really interesting work. Well done everyone.