Monday, 17 September 2018

Opening night of our Spring Exhibition at Kirstenbosch

 Behind the scenes...
 All the artists names ready and waiting
The panels get set up and arranged by the committee with numbers ready for the artists to display their work.
 Here is the first set of paintings going up

Then there were just a few that needed to be hung and we were ready to open!

 Linda welcomed everyone and thanked Sue for all her hard work behind the scenes before introducing our guest speaker Jeremy Day who gave an inspiring talk to our artists and their guests before declaring the exhibition open!
Jeremy expanding on his A, B and Cs for artists (We are hoping for a transcript of his talk)

 Jeremy was gracious enough to encourage a first time exhibitor and gave a few hints and tips when she was brave enough to ask for a critique.

The evening was well attended by friends and families of the 71 exhibiting artists who braved the blustery weather to share in the excitement of another exhibition under way.

Thursday, 6 September 2018

August Meeting, AGM and Art Competition

We had a lovely turnout of over 80 members for our August Meeting which included our AGM and Art competition themed “ A Different View”

Linda Gotlieb opened the meeting with a warm warm welcome to everyone. Members then voted for their choices in the competition. There were 51 entries so it was a difficult choice.

Once everyone voted we got onto the business end of the evening.

In her Chairman's report Linda thanked the many people who have played a role in our society in 2018:
 Judy Nunan, for the ongoing use of her garage as our storage facility.

2.    To all the artists who have exhibited their work and taken part in the monthly challenges, and to those who have and given ideas for challenges and meetings.
3.    To our most outstanding Committee and their partners, and helpers and all who contribute to making the members meetings and the exhibitions the success they continue to be.
4.    To Lesley Charnock, who opened our September exhibition, and Helen Van Stolk who opened our January exhibition.
5.    To those members who have donated art materials – they are so appreciated by the Dominican School for the Deaf who will be receiving a R3000 donation from CAS again this year.
6.    To our members, Ian and Cathy Jay for their book donation and also to Audrey Innes who, on behalf of SASA donated several books which they had duplicates of, to our library.
7.    To the sponsors of our competitions Deckle Edge, The Italian Art Shop, ETH Canvas and Artland, who also offer discounts to our members.
Thank you to the stores that offer discounts to our members, Creative Art Atelier, Brush and Canvas, we thank you!  Also Waltons in Constantia Village, good work by Kirsten Slater helped bring them to our attention.
8.    To our speakers and demonstrators each month who have truly been amazing. :
           September – Christopher Reid, who did a dazzling pastel portrait of our  
           stunning red headed member Belinda Du Randt
October – Beth Lowe did the most outstanding en Plein Air lecture, complete with a time lapse video which was truly amazing
           November – end of year party and Best Painting competition won by Sue
      January Noeleen Kleve spoke of her art and printmakers residency in Venice
      February- Clare Burgess spoke on Travels with a Landscape Architect and
      took us to Nieuw Bethseda in the Karoo and the life of Helen Martins
      March - Jeremy Day gave us a very interesting and humorous
      Presentation of his ability to paint super realistically. How very patient he is!
      April  - Penny Steynor did a fantastic water-colour demo of a sea scene
      May- Wyn Rossouw painted a pomegranate in oils and we learned about colour  
      and values
      June Noeleen Kleve was back to do a presentation of the Venice and Sydney
      July Sonja Frenz did a most wonderful demonstration in charcoal of a landscape  

It is inspiring and rewarding to see the many different styles, methods and approaches of the various artists we all learn so much from seeing these experts so generously give of their time and knowledge.

The September 2017 exhibition ran for 24 days and had 64 artists participating who sold 63 paintings and 91 portfolios with sales totaling R166574
The January 2018 exhibition ran for 10 days and we saw 72 artists participate with 104 works sold, with sales totaling R99050
We had a lovely surprise third exhibition in April where 67 members sold 66 paintings in 10 days and brought in sales of R109000
That’s R375 000 in sales in total! Quite marvelous!
We were also kindly invited by SASA to participate in their Art in the Park exhibitions in November and March and many of our members sold paintings.
The exhibitions at Westlake have sadly come to an end, because of their renovations – if anyone has any leads on where we can exhibit, please speak to a committee member

 We were sorry to lose three very active members of our society who passed away unexpectedly this year. Richard Jacobs, Ken Hart and David Beatty are missed.

On a happier note, congratulations to our members Elize Bezuidenhout, Christopher Reid, Sonja Rivett-Carnac and Philip Cohen, who have done well in art competitions this year.

Financial Report
Melanie Meyer then spoke about the Society's finances and thanked members for paying their subs. Copies of the figures for the past year were available for members to look at.
Election of Committee
Linda gave a huge thank you to the existing committee members who have worked extremely hard this past year and been a tremendous support:
Sue Paulsen – our efficient exhibition organizer, competition coordinator and Vice-chair
Lizzie Kruger – our super secretary
Melanie Meyer - our hard working treasurer
Linda Howe-Ely - our Social Media, Blog and Face Book specialist
Carrie Lam – our librarian
Karin Davel, coordinating member evening teas, and Westlake exhibitions
Connie Rossmeisl – competitions
Elleanor Fulker – secretarial duties and admin

Election of committee for the new Financial year

Connie Rossmeisl, and Carrie Lam have resigned from the committee. Thank you for all your hard work over the past two years.

Those standing  again for 2019. (There are some changes in Portfolios)
Sue Paulsen Vice-Chair and Teas,
Melanie Meyer, Treasurer
Lizzie Kruger, Secretary
Linda Howe-Ely, Exhibitions
Karin Davel Competitions
Elleanor Fulker – secretarial duties and admin whilst Lizzie is on Maternity leave.

Linda applauded the 3 new members who volunteered to come onto the committee , welcome to Ian Jay, Belinda Basson and Noeline McMaster .
Belinda Basson  CAS Communications
Noeline McMaster, Library

All the above members as well as Linda Gotlieb were voted on to the committee.

Linda award Honorary Membership to both Sue Paulsen and Melanie Meyer who have both served 5 years on the Committee.

Linda told the meeting that she will be stepping down at the end of the year, after 3 and a half years on the committee and 2 as Chairman.
She announced that Ian Jay will take over as Chairman from January 2019

While the winners were being calculated, members had a look at the Artland "pop up shop" which had a wide variety of art materials on display. 
Members were also asked to fill out the new Membership Profile forms.
The idea of the form is to help us to get CAS to know the members better, and assist the committee to see what members are interested in.

Awarding of prizes/certificates for winners - Prizes were sponsored by Deckle Edge and Artland.

 First prize went to new member Ellen Casalena

 Second prize went to Liz Pearson

Third place went to Judy Hilton-Green

 Merit went to Lyn Northam

Merit also went to Penny Steynor

Monday, 6 August 2018


After graduating with a degree in Fine Arts, Sonja Frenz worked as a graphic designer, a teacher and a lecturer at the University of Pretoria. In 2004 Sonja moved to Cape Town, and quickly built up a solid reputation as an art teacher. She is a co-owner of Creative Arts Atelier in Durbanville, a fine arts supply shop and teaching studio, where she teaches about 50 students per week. She is currently taking a breather from teaching to explore her own artist voice.
A self-proclaimed lover of colour, Sonja decided to get back to basics and explore the world of monotones to deepen her knowledge of tonal values and refine her drawing skills. She presented us with a charcoal drawing of a forest landscape that holds a special place in her heart.
To start, Sonja introduced her charcoal toolkit; running through the various types of charcoal mediums and their uses, how she incorporates pan pastels, her multitude of mark-making and erasing tools, and what paper she prefers to work with.
Sonja showing us her array of drawing tools.
Sketching and talking is quite a difficult feat, but Sonja, with her years of teaching experience, smoothly navigated the show-and-tell of technique demonstration.   

Sonja giving us some wonderful advice.

She is very generous with her knowledge and gave advice on a range of topics related to being an artist, throwing in personal anecdotes to highlight lessons learnt. She emphasised the importance of planning and drawing skills, stating that the alternative is to fix it on the canvas, which is harder and more stressful. 
Sonja with her drawing.
She gave tips on how to filter information to make it relevant to your journey; to welcome what triggers your interest, and not to imitate others, but to lean into your own unique artistic voice. She gave tips on pattern-awareness, perspective, vocal points, how to bring emotion to your art, and training for true concentration. She described her love for process over product, explaining that one should not paint only to sell, but to give yourself permission to paint what you love, to explore techniques, to make mistakes and thus, to grow as an artist.

Treasurer Melanie Meyer thanking Sonja

You can find Sonja online at or on Facebook at
CAS members enjoy a 5% discount at Creative Arts Atelier

Words by Lizzie Kruger

Monday, 9 July 2018


Noeleen Kleve, artist and printmaker, gave about 60 CAS members and visitors a very interesting and insightful talk on the Art Biennale events she attended in Venice (2017) and Sydney (2018). 

Noeleen Kleve at the CAS meeting

She called these events the Olympics of Art and the audience was treated to some showstopping pieces that proved the observation.
Noeleen Kleve in Venice

The Venice Biennale is the most prestigious of all the Biennales; it occurs every 2 years and has an international curator every time it runs. The focus of the Art Biennale is on contemporary art in a variety of mediums, including huge interactive exhibitions. The exhibitions scattered all throughout the city, encouraging attendees to explore the city and the art scene as one. 

Map of Venice showing Biennale exhibition spaces (red and green)

 There are 2 main venues that can easily take up 8 hours each to work your way through all the stunning art pieces. The 2017 Biennale was categorised into 9 pavilions and Noeleen shared examples of work from each pavilion, which included historical and new pieces from local, regional and international artists, highlighting some recognisable South African artists like Liza Lou and African artists like Abdoulaye Konaté. Note: Both these artists have work displayed at the recently opened Norval Foundation Art Museum in Tokai.

Liz Lou’s collaborative work “The Clouds”. 600 beaded cloths woven by Zulu women.
Clay bowls with tapered end pinched to resemble a mouth-like form. 
1000 acrylic colours painted on a wall (Venice)
Abdoulaye Konat'e

The Sydney Biennale was the 21st one and the curator was from Japan. The theme was “Superposition” and the incredible contemporary art pieces were presented across 7 venues in the city. Noeleen showed artworks on display, as well as shots from the adjoined Vivid Sydney event, which involved projections onto various buildings, including the Sydney Opera House.

Sydney Opera House - Still of Video Projection

Indigenous Australian artist Esmeralda Timbery

In conjunction with the Venice Biennale, Noeleen spent a month in Venice on a printmaking artist residency. (please refer to Jan 2018 Palette for presentation write up)

Noeleen's personal workspace in the “residents’ room” at Scuola di Grafica

Noeleen once again encouraged the audience to do an artist residency to further develop their artist voice. She suggested the following website for available opportunities -

Words: Lizzie Kruger

Tuesday, 19 June 2018


Wyn's calm demeanour and well-prepared power point presentation on how to approach a painting, 
backed up by sketchbooks full of daily inspirational studies - to show that she practices what she 
preaches - led us to understand why there is such beautiful depth to her work. 

Wyn Rossouw with the painting she did at the meeting.

The finished work

Through careful thought, experimentation, research, to learning from others and an in-depth understanding of colour and her chosen medium, she is growing daily.

The soothing piano music and Wyn's focus on the job in hand, kept everybody spell-bound.

The end-result had a beautiful 'Wyn character' - harmony of colour, great composition, interesting broken
 edges and brushstrokes...underlined her words spoken at the beginning of the talk/demo: 
'Use the best quality materials you can afford!'

Wyn's paints

Wyn's palette

I guess we all wish we can spend more creative time in her presence, as she is a Master! Thank you.
Words: Karin Davel

Wyn has very kindly sent us her notes of the evening demonstration:
I chose a very simple still life. The concept was to capture the essence of the pomegranate fruit, especially the gem like pips. My subject was well lit with background and foreground as sparse as possible, to enhance this.
I laid out the following pigments:
Titanium White
Naples Yellow (light) / Naples Yellow reddish / Yellow Ochre (light) / Yellow Ochre (dark) / Cadmium
Yellow (light) / Cadmium Yellow (medium)
Mars Red / Cadmium Red (medium) / Permanent Carmine
Cobalt blue / Ultramarine
Burnt Umber / Burnt Sienna
I used Italian Art Shop odourless spirits and Medium No 1
I used the following brushes...
Dynasty 2,5 cm flat
Raphael flat bristle No 22
Rosemary & Co long flat Nos 4, 6 & 8
I had a palette knife and a painting knife on hand.
My support was a Supawood board, painted with 4 layers of gesso, lightly sanded in between.
Using the Dynasty flat brush, I began with a notan sketch of my subject. I used a mixture of
Cadmium Red and Burnt Umber, loosened with a little spirit (turps).
Before it dried, I worked with a rag, dispersing as well as wiping back paint. I also put in more darks where needed. A tonal sketch resulted.
I checked that it was still working compositionally ... the picture plane roughly divided into thirds, with all the ‘action’ centrally. In addition, a rabatment division to align with the most eye catching arrangement of pomegranate seeds, roughly 5/8ths into the picture plane. I also planned an ‘L’ shaped lead in. All this can be checked with the final result.
Since I prefer this stage to be dry before I proceed, I prepared another similar tonal sketch beforehand, which I continued to work on. Now it was time to add colour. I used my other brushes, generally from the broadest to the smallest, to apply the paint to the tonal sketch. I used a little of my medium to keep the paint at the buttery consistency I prefer.
I started working in the classical way with oils, from dark to light, and from thinner to thicker paint.
I continually referenced my subject, carefully observing and comparing tonal values, dark and light massed shapes, positive and negative shapes, colour shapes and temperature, and lost and
found edges. I was careful to include some background and foreground colour into the subject
and vice versa.
I remained aware of any lead in to my subject, especially to the jewel like pips, and emphasized this.
I needed to effectively capture the shiny dark jelly surrounding the pips and the contrasting white pith.
This latter, I rendered in impasto paint.
Using my fine rigger, I finally applied very careful touches of titanium white mixed with cadmium yellow light, to highlight some pips. I wanted these to really ‘pop’.
The music I played during the demo was ‘Islands’ by Ludovico Einaudi.”

Tuesday, 8 May 2018


We were privileged to have the very experienced artist and art teacher Penny Steynor to demonstrate a watercolour painting to us, which she pretty much finished in just under an hour. Penny started the session with a lesson which covered “Subject, sketch, effects, composition, colours and techniques."

Penny's main points when starting a painting.

In preparation, decide your purpose, figure out what you want to paint, and know where you are going. Do a tonal sketch to compose your painting. Find your focal point and remember one third light, one third dark and the rest medium tones.

One of Penny's tonal sketches.

Penny likes to use a limited palette made up of two transparent colours and one opaque.
She made it all look so easy as she painted away moving her board around to manipulate the paint and water and used a hairdryer to dry the painting to speed up the process.
She stressed that one should only have one go at getting the horizon line looking perfect to avoid a build-up of paint.

Penny working on the foreground.

Penny had applied masking fluid to the sketch before coming to the evening and stressed that it should not be left on for more than 24 hours. Soften edges and waves by wiping with good old toilet paper.

There are three tones in the sea, deep sea, mid sea, and foreground sea and foam.
The splash was made by flicking masking fluid with a toothbrush.

Recommendations: Rosemary brushes, 300g learner Bockingford paper
Research artists Gordon Lake and Phil Cloete, watch Alvaro Castagnet and Jacob Zbucvic

We were also treated to having a look at the calendars of her paintings which Penny has produced every year since 2011.  Fourteen pages of the most beautiful paintings per calendar which were passed around during the meeting.
It’s amazing what 50 000 hours of practice can do to help when you’re painting under pressure in front of an audience.
Penny was magnificent and the audience were spellbound. In fact it’s the first time that members did not wait for me to do the formal thank you to the artist at the close of the meeting……they sprung to their feet and surged forward to see the completed painting and to ask questions. We had a chuckle as I presented the gift quietly to Penny on the outside of the group who were looking, discussing and admiring the end result.

Written by Linda Gotlieb.

Thursday, 12 April 2018

March Meeting - presentation by Jeremy Day

Jeremy was thoroughly entertaining and such a natural speaker who had the audience hanging on his every word. His fantastic sense of humour, so prevalent in so many of his art pieces shone through in his talk as well. The jokes flowed comfortably, and he weaved interesting facts and jargon into his speech like the pro he clearly is.
As a new member to CAS, he mentioned how familiar and welcomed he felt amongst all the artists and how great it was to be surrounded by familiar faces.
Jeremy told us about his early years as a youngster drawing up hundreds of labels for a clothing company. He worked in the Cape Times advertising department, and even broke free to start his own successful advertising company in 1975. He dabbled in furniture design, scale models and even sculpting for a while.
His love for painting emerged again after almost two decades of dormancy due to family and business commitments, and plunging in, he opened his first solo exhibition called Tranquillity in the early 90’s. He encouraged his fellow artists to take this vital step, saying it’s vital for exposure. Scary yes, but vital.
About 10 years ago he became a full-time artist. He joined local art societies, and through these avenues, met artists that inspired his greatly. He spent time studying at Ruth Prowse under Erik Laubscher, which he sees as a cornerstone period in his artistic journey. Jeremy celebrates constructive criticism amongst artists, saying feedback he received in the past has been was firm, and non-offensive, which made him grow stronger as an artist.
Jeremy recommended the 90minute work – break – 90minute work style of painting, saying it has been proven to be more productive than trying to sit and paint for hours on end. He suggests leaving a cliff-hanger to come back to so that you are excited to get back to work again. His goal every day is to have 6 hours of productive working time. He explained the difference between hyper-realism and photo-realism and why he identifies his work as ‘’Localism” i.e. local content with realism. He showed us that he still enjoys artistic freedoms in his creations and how to use a variety of tools to perfect our methods. Especially noteworthy is how handy Photoshop is in the planning phases of a painting!
Jeremy showed us how he uses photoshop.

The finished work.

Jeremy showed us a variety of his art pieces and walked us through the thinking and creation processes of each one. 
Die Missies met die Spanspek

He talked about his signature water lily in his paintings and how he manipulates dimensions to fit in with the mood of the painting, whether it be poking fun at the South Africanisms we deal with every day (e.g. his painting titled Martyr’s Horse); or his keen observations about every life (e.g. his painting titled Die Miesies met die Spanspek) or when he uses his artistic voice to showcase the state of the nation (e.g. his painting titled Reclamation). You can find out more about Jeremy, as well as see his fantastic art works, via his website:
Words by Lizzie Kruger


Sunday, 11 March 2018

February Meeting - Clare Burgess Presentation

The title of the presentation was: "Travels with a Landscape Architect, from Moore to Martins - a presentation of outdoor sculptures & artworks from around the World."

Clare Burgess has her own practice as a landscape architect, also lectures both at UCT and CPUT, and had a wealth of knowledge to impart to the audience. She has an incredible passion for landscaping and the impact this art form has on the emotional state of the people who move through the dance between sculptures and nature. Clare explained how it is necessary to position art in a landscape, and not just put it down anywhere.

She took us on a journey through a variety of local installations, including both Delaire Graff, and Paradyskloof, in Stellenbosch, which houses over 60 Dylan Lewis sculptures. She also referred to the Dylan Lewis's "Untamed" exhibition in the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in 2010.

To her, the viewer experience is of utmost importance, and she took us on a virtual stroll through these gardens, highlighting the balance of hard with soft, masculine with feminine and how landscape artists married these concepts through vegetation in the landscape and natural elements of the sculptures.

She took us through the Khayelitsha Hospital gardens and Mitchells Plain Public Transport spaces, which were two local projects that she has been involved in. She emphasized the importance and pleasure of involving the local artists and communities in these art pieces, as it creates ownership and pride. School children from Mitchells Plain designed the playpark and the projects also acted as an employment initiative. At the hospital the mosaic on the sculptures were all done by locals who could explore their inner creativity.

Clare took us on a history trip, teaching us about the most memorable and ground-breaking sculptures on the planet, including The Statue of Liberty in New York; Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro and then most importantly, Michelangelo's David in Florence, which is an ideal example of Renaissance art which celebrates balance, harmony and symmetry in all art forms. She also spoke about Henry Moore's sculptures and how they are placed in the landscape. She also referred to the Zimbabwean stone sculptures.

Clare’s passion for the town of Nieu Bethesda in the Eastern Cape came through as she spoke about the surrounding landscapes, the wildlife and the charm of this little town that houses the famous Owl House, the house of Helen Martins, which is one of South Africa’s best examples of Outsider Art installations. Outsider art, sometimes referred to as naive art, covers a broad range of media. The hallmarks of outsider artists often involve spontaneity, influenced by the world around them, and often involving the incorporation of found materials, such as broken ceramics, glass, wire and cement. The execution of the works often includes a high degree of stylisation of form, and an unconventional conceptualisation of theme and application of media. Outsider artists are mostly self-taught individuals, who in many instances often remain obscure until their deaths. (1)

The Owl House was declared a National Monument site in September 2017, and with a very dedicated group of volunteers we can see why this historical house draws so many art lovers to the area. Clare volunteered her time to prepare a landscape masterplan for the Owl House Museum in Nieu Bethesda.
Helen Martins’ fantastical sculptures inspired Athol Fugard to write the much-loved play, “Road to Mecca”, which later became a film. The play is currently running at the Fugard theatre until the end of March.

1. From