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LETTERS FROM AFRICA (article first published : 2006-09-3)

Heleen Verwey is amongst Holland’s most celebrated artists. Her work engages issues associated with location, be it geographical or spiritual. Her work is a continuous process engaging ideas associated with the place called home.

“This series of work is about my experiences as a foreign person living in Africa, and living in South Africa for the last seven years,” says Heleen. “It is a direct and philosophical reflection connecting me with this environment. Most of the work has motifs from this landscape which been reworked into art pieces - be they scraps of metal, postcards, embroidery and anything else I could lay my hands on that I considered appropriate.

“The material in different ways speaks about the past and the present of this country and continent and motivated the artwork, Letters from Africa,” says Heleen. “These works are little vignettes that personalise my relationship in this environment and like letters they communicate and narrate in their own way, my experiences and my story. Part of this series is unframed canvasses, which can be rolled up like a scroll. The scroll is an early form of letter, which I have used in a modern setting”.

Letters from Africa will travel to Holland, Heleen’s home country. It is a continuation of the communication, which the artist has with her home, her country and the adopted one, which is South Africa.

Letters from Africa opens at 18h00 on September 5 and runs until September 24 in the KZNSA’s Mezzanine Gallery.

More information from Nathi Gumede, Curator: KZNSA Gallery, on 031 202 3686 or 031 277 1703 or 082 220 0368. Visit the KZNSA’s website at www.kznsagallery.co.za




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