The University of Cape Town
Irma Stern Museum
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Current Exhibitions

Aurora Francois Roux retrospective

From 28 February until 30 March

Curated by Michael Chandler

Theunis Roux to give walkabout of exhibition on Sat 9 March at 11am

Born in 1927 in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), Francois Roux showed natural artistic talent from an early age. After studying at the Royal Academy of Art in London in the late 1940s Roux returned to Zimbabwe to nurse his ailing parents. 1967 he moved to Cape Town where he lived until his death in 2013. Perhaps a result of growing up on a farm, Roux loved the outdoors and dedicated his life to painting the mountains, rocks, sand dunes and trees. His distinct abstraction of subject matter, use of bright, jewel-like colour and the love of natural subjects would be the qualities that Roux would pursue, explore and interrogate for the duration of his life and career. He never wavered from this artistic vision; he chose to hone what he believed in, rather than to keep up with international art trends. This is made apparent in this large exhibition of work where you can see the same artistic exploration and curiosity in the brush strokes of a boyhood self-portrait, as you can in his colossal landscapes, as you can in his final painting of a wild, turbulent sea.

Irma & Louis on Silk

12 March 2019

The contemporary silk scarf has its origins in Ancient Egypt, where the legendary Queen Nefertiti used the first recorded scarf as an elegant headcovering under her crown. It has since evolved into one of the most sought after fashion accessory of the modern world. The Hermes empire in Paris launched the first prêt-à-porter silk square in 1837. It took the world by storm. Today, most of the Internationally reckoned fashion houses create custom printed scarves, often collaborating with well-known artists transforming the silk square from a delectable fashion statement to a collectible work of art. When a vintage Hermes silk square comes on auction, it is bound to fetch record prices as avid collectors vie for the rare sought after pieces.

The source of inspiration for the series of six organic silk squares,
is the exuberant work of South Africa's iconic Grand Dame of art, Irma Stern. Artist Louis Jansen van Vuuren personnally selected the images from paintings in the UCT Irma Stern Museum and a from a private collection.
This particular selection aims to illuminate the richly diverse style of Stern’s dynamic oeuvre. The series is presented as bespoke, limited edition, numbered artworks.

To design a successful and beautiful multi-functional silk scarf takes some savoir- faire, it is not as simple as randomly placing a beguiling artwork on a piece of organic silk. It takes ingenious maneuvering and re-adjustment until one arrives at the optimal design that will drape stunningly, creating a pleasant interaction of abstact shapes and a musical play of colours.

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