From the Director's Desk

 
 

FROM THE DIRECTOR’S DESK

 At our Annual General Meeting in November last year we bade farewell to Professor Terence King as Vice-Chairman of the Tatham Art Gallery Board of Trustees and Chairman of the Board’s Acquisitions Committee. He has been involved in one way or another with the Gallery for over 32 years. We wish him and his wife, Pam, many happy years of closer contact with family in Johannesburg. Christopher Duigan was elected Vice Chair for the coming year.

 

 

Professor Terence King with his retirement gift from the Gallery Board, a specially commissioned painting by Hussein Salim

Professor Terence King with his retirement gift from the Gallery Board, a specially commissioned painting by Hussein Salim

 

 

The Gallery has always had strong historical ties with the Centre for Visual Art (CVA) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. We welcome Dr Louise Hall of the CVA as a new Board member.

We are making good progress with restoration of art works affected by the flood in May last year. It is   fortunate that no paintings were deemed irreparable.  Seven art works on paper were declared irreparable:    pen and ink drawings by Carola Brotherton; koki drawings by Derrick Nxumalo and Philane Nzimande; and a mixed media drawing by Elijah Radebe. Fortunately we have similar works in the collection. 

 The image below shows the devastating effect of water on drawings made with koki pen. The vibrant colour is simply washed out. There is no way a restorer could recreate the lost areas to match the original. 

 

 

 

Derrick Nxumalo,   KwaZulu Modern Farm, pen, ink & koki on card

The main exhibition room will only be available for temporary exhibitions from the end of March. It is currently used as our painting restoration studio. Despite this we have five temporary exhibitions opening between January and April.

Our first temporary exhibition of the year honours Dr Valerie Leigh, curator of the Gallery from 1967 to 1974. This exhibition presents Valerie’s own work in the permanent collection. This is followed by the Maritzburg Philatelic Society’s award-winning display of stamps and other memorabilia focusing on the history of Pietermaritzburg. Five Degrees of Realism showcases the work of five local artists, and a new display in the Ceramics Room juxtaposes different containers for holding liquids. The first exhibition in the main exhibition room is a solo show by Beth Diane Armstrong, Standard Bank Young Artist award winner for visual art in 2017.

The Gallery continues to provide visual arts programmes within the community. A very successful mandala workshop was run for the Pietermaritzburg Mental Health Society late last year.

Brendan Bell

FROM THE DIRECTOR’S DESK

 

Constructing a mandala from petals and leaves

Constructing a mandala from petals and leaves

 
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