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FOREST OF COLUMNS (article first published : 2003-03-23)

Running at the NSA Gallery until April 6 is an exhibition of mosaic columns by Jane du Rand titled Forest of Columns.

Jane du Rand is a mosaic artist living and working in Durban. A qualified architect, she has been working with mosaics on numerous public and private commissions mainly through architects who use her work as part of the design and building process.

Interested in decoration as an integral part of design, Jane du Rand has contributed to major recent public buildings and sites, including Melrose Arch in Johannesburg and the recent pilot project for the rejuvenation of West Street in the CBD of Durban.

For the exhibition, she presents 12 exquisitely crafted columns. Rekindling research interest in columns since her architectural studies, the exhibition traces a kind of heritage or lineage to the Tuscan Doric Column, which became a norm for veranda houses in Durban in the early 1900’s. Inspiration was also drawn from the Dogon in Mali and its carved images, as well as the Egyptian capitals developed from the patterns and shapes of local plant forms.

Describing the exhibition as a “forest” of columns, the artist has attributed each individual piece with its own history or symbolism – each with a name and a sense of “place”. Each themed column has been luxuriously covered in rare sourced tiles and thousands of tiny colourful ceramic objects, painstakingly hand made and glazed.




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