A visual journey
Online exhibition launched
04 June 2020 | Art and Entertainment
Prof Andre du Pisani; “His paintings picture stillness, serenity, space and innocence.”
A new online exhibition by the Fine Art Gallery seeks to lift the spirits of art fans under quarantine and lockdown.
The exhibition features work by Willem van Schalkwyk and is titled Terra Namibia – A visual journey.
The collection includes mixed media as well as oil paintings on canvas and board, consisting mainly of popular landscapes like the Spitzkoppe, the dunes of the Namib and the beautiful Atlantic Ocean.
Speaking at the opening, Prof Andre du Pisani praised Van Schalkwyk as an artist who does not focus on politics, history or memory, but rather on a captured moment in nature.
“The artist’s ethics of seeing is that of a landscape without people. His paintings picture stillness, serenity, space and innocence.”
According to Du Pisani, there is a distinct sense of belonging and of place in Van Schalkwyk’s art.
The artist matriculated at Louis Trichardt in the former Northern Transvaal, South Africa, in 1969. He then received informal art training under a former art lecturer between 1978 and 1984.
In August 1984, Van Schalkwyk was promoted and transferred to Okahandja by SA Railways, which later became TransNamib. He resigned from TransNamib in November 1992, after 19 years of combined service to become a fulltime artist.
He then became a businessman in a partnership in Okahandja in September, 1994, and only worked as a part-time artist. As from 2003, he was also involved in cut flower farming on a full-time basis with his family until 2011.
Since then, Van Schalkwyk has been a fulltime artist and lives in Okahandja.
He has participated in various group exhibitions in Namibia, South Africa and the Netherlands. One of his paintings was chosen by the 2000 Foundation International Art Project and was displayed at the Millennium Art Collection in the Netherlands. Other exhibitions include at Atelier Kendzia (1986), Frametique (1989), Die Muschel (2006) and the Franco Namibian Cultural Centre (2006).
In terms of awards, Van Schalkwyk won the Fine Art section of the Waterberg Arts and Craft Show, which took place in Nylstroom, South Africa in 1984, and he was also honoured with a Merit Award at the 1997 Standard Bank Biennale, which took place in Windhoek.
The exhibition, which ends on 22 June, can be viewed at https://www.facebook.com/fineartgallerynamibia.