Rooted in art

27 August 2020 | Art and Entertainment

Swakopmund • [email protected]


Trees are in the spotlight as they are the centrepiece of the Rooted –Trees in Contemporary Art exhibition at the Fine Art Gallery in Swakopmund.

According to gallery owner Martina von Wenzel, the exhibition depicts the endurance and survival of trees against fire, wind and drought in Africa.

“It comprises the work of contemporary artists inspired by the majesty, beauty, and importance of the trees around us. For many centuries, trees have been a valuable part of our cultural and spiritual values. Since the beginning of time, nature has been a touchstone of artistic inspiration,” she says.

The contributing artists – Willem van Schalkwyk, Siegfried Neumann, Louise van Wielligh and Lepi Jacobs – were selected for their unique relationship with trees, whether intellectual, scientific or aesthetic.

The trees depicted in the art pieces include Acacias, the Welwitschia, the quiver tree and the boabab. The art pieces on display include mixed media, gouache, oil on board as well as oil on canvas, acryl.

According to Von Wenzel, the trees in the artworks were chosen by the artist because of their gnarled twisted form and the strong story of survival they communicate to the viewer.

“Trees have been around long before humans came along. They are strong, tall and multifunctional, and create microclimates for people while providing oxygen in exchange for the carbon dioxide we produce. However, our relationship with trees goes beyond this simple transactional equation,” she concluded.

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