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 2021 – A NEW YEAR – A NEW STORY TO BE TOLD (Painted)

At last… A new year, a new page, and in my case, yet another new town.

It is 2021, 2020 might have been one of the longest, and simultaneously, in some weird way, one of the shortest years ever in my life.
Nobody knows what this year holds for us.
As in 2020, I still prefer to steer my focus away from all the bad news.
I am aware and careful and I have extreme respect for our current situation, but I still refuse to get caught up in a mode of fear.

I do wish you a healthy, safe and prosperous year and my heart goes out to all of you who lost loved ones. 

 

I feel ready for this year, I hope you too?!

 

I have experienced that after every “break” from my art and at each new years start, my art takes on a new direction in some small or sometimes even a larger way. 

I feel it in my bones that something new will sprout out of this new chapter in my life and I am curious to see what it might be.

I’m settled in my new home and although I’m in Bloemfontein for less than two months now, I already feel more at home than I did at the places I lived in the past 10 years.

My workspace is sorted and I am ready to make my start.

 

MY BREAKDOWN of 2020:

PARYS: 

To begin with, I relocated to Parys in the Freestate at the end of November 2019.

I am not sure if it was the influence of the artist town, or because of all the pawnshops and craft shops that surrounded me, but my work became more playful and I started incorporating a lot of found objects into my art. My creations also became more 3 dimensional. 

Below are a few images of work I created there at the beginning of 2020.

 

And… then, Lockdown came.
I had to make use of what I had and as the art shops were closed, I painted on small canvas boards that I had with me. I created a small painting per day and was privileged to sell each one as soon as it was done.
These paintings were more sentimental with motivational messages.

The photo of me between my “Lockdown” paintings is by photographer, Deon Terblanche , who did an amazing project, he captured lockdown scenes each day of the first phase of the Lockdown. 

 

Mariaan Kotze between her Lock-Down Paintings

 AN UNEXPECTED MOVE :
Relocation to a small village: Vaaloewer

Without planning it, I had to move again, because of the short notice and difficult circumstances, I did not have a lot of options and was given the wonderful opportunity to live in a three-story log house next to the river in Vaaloewer, a small village with only one shop. 

During the few months I stayed there, I used the attic as my studio.

 I saw it as my “thinking tower” as Carl Jung called his “thinking space”.

My attic studio was large and a friend ordered a few canvasses for me that was a bit larger than the ones I used the past year. 

 Having a bigger studio to work in, and larger canvasses and being in a different space than the homes I stayed in before, definitely had a positive impact on my art. 

 

  Although it was an idyllic looking house in a beautiful setting and with the best landlord you can dream to have, I had a hard time adopting  and I felt a bit misplaced as I was living in a house with furniture that was not mine and I soon realized that it was not “my home”.

  Not knowing where to next and for how long I would stay, made me, in a way, escaping into my paintings, which was a good thing.

 

  I think, also the fact that I was close to water and in a bit of a mystical setting, took me back to a phase of narrative paintings I did earlier in my life. 

When I was staying In Mossel Bay a few years ago, I did mostly Narrative paintings and I used a lot of fishes in my art.

This time, next to water, as in Mossel Bay, I revisited my “Vis-Vrou” (Fish-woman) paintings and I loved doing it! 

 

I strive to have an untethered soul and maybe in a way, I get to have a soul like that when I escape into my art.

“If you want to be happy, you have to let go of the part of you that wants to create melodrama. This is the part that thinks there’s a reason not to be happy. You have to transcend the personal, and as you do, you will naturally awaken to the higher aspects of your being. In the end, enjoying life’s experiences is the only rational thing to do. You’re sitting on a planet spinning around in the middle of absolutely nowhere. Go ahead, take a look at reality. You’re floating in empty space in a universe that goes on forever. If you have to be here, at least be happy and enjoy the experience. You’re going to die anyway. Things are going to happen anyway. Why shouldn’t you be happy? You gain nothing by being bothered by life’s events. It doesn’t change the world; you just suffer. There’s always going to be something that can bother you, if you let it.”

 

― Michael A. Singer

 

 

 The paintings below are some of the art I did while I was staying in Vaaloewer.

I feel that these paintings  is what I would like to build on this year.

 I also would like to do more functional art pieces and make use of recycling in my art.

 I dream of creating large sculptures…

Evolution of the Soul

In 2020 I did at least 218 artworks – of those 218 I have only 6 available.
In spite of a year full of challenges, I was blessed with wonderful sales.

 

You can go to my Shop page for my available art.

Thank you for your support.
You make my journey worthwhile.

Please subscribe to my newsletter, it will be great to have you as part of my “art family”

All my love
Mariaan