Old selfie, old portrait

beautiful self portrait (Minnette Vari) cannot go un-noticed

beautiful self-portrait (Minnette Vari) cannot go un-noticed

I was lucky yesterday. I managed to get away from my desk for an hour and went on a guided walk-about of a new art exhibition! Again I was blown away by the beautiful art works and the knowledge of the curator in this gallery. How do people remember all these dates, names and history facts? I kept telling myself that I better start reading some of the art books I have collected over the years…there is so much to learn, so much I don’t know.

Maquette for statue of Jan Smuts

Maquette for statue of Jan Smuts

This exhibition entitled from “From Sitting to Selfie” is absolutely the most ingenious exhibition I have seen, it’s divided into four periods for this display. Now you can’t divide years of art into four or any other number and you can’t put so many years of art in one exhibition even if the title is portraits there is just tooo much. But this was very cleverly put together into four sections/periods in art history.

Go back to 1600s before cameras – Baroque and Romanticism. They sat for hours or days for a portrait. Only royalty or the very rich had portraits done. Masters left us with Realistic and Truthful and Accurate paintings perfectly capturing the resemblance on the portrait.


something to admire...these were painted in 1617

something to admire…these were painted in 1617

And then cameras were invented, late 1800s or early 1900s and paintings changed a bit. From the realistic portrait to beautiful modernism and impressionism and cubism – art works that for me offer a bit more thought…these are the pieces that you need to admire from a distance. My favorites are these, all the art eras of the ism’s.  Food for thought and little more character and personality. The portraits had their own disposition, some were odd and eccentric. Makes me think that artists in this time were all rebellious and a bit nutty. But I love that about them….


Portrait of Annie Mavata, you have to see this real life, she is almost ready to talk to you. Love this painting, it is incredibly beautiful

Portrait of Annie Mavata, you have to see this in real life, she is almost ready to talk to you. Love this painting, it is incredibly beautiful.  I you look away and then back at her quickly it looks like she has moved her hand, just amazing

Jan Smuts - reminder of history class when I was in school and paid little attention, only now I'm interested in history. This is one of my favorite paintings there...

Jan Smuts – reminder of history class when I was in school and paid little attention, only now I’m interested in history. This is one of my favorite paintings there…

And then postmodernism was born…in the 20th century, interesting but not my favourite time in art. This is like the one chapter in the school book that I would skip and just look at the pretty pictures.  Maybe one day I will change my mind about this and understand it a little better. Still I found some really beautiful pieces, that had me staring for a while.

Reshada Crouse painting (1994) so much to talk about in this painting, so many stories to tell...

Reshada Crouse painting (1994) so much to talk about in this painting, so many stories to tell…

Enter the selfie and digital era, the era where we snap and happily share and print every moment of our lives. Internet changed the world for ever and changed the way we do things. A lot of our private moments have become quite public. It is fast and quick and it has moved from a gallery and photo frame to cyber space. Everything is different, it’s lifelike or totally unrealistic. Experimentation, revelation and exposure.

smoke portraits (2005) painting with smoke, unbelievable

smoke portraits (2005) painting with smoke, unbelievable

I’m not sure this is the best era, and I’m not sure I like this one either.  I want to go back to the 1900s and admire Picasso, Matisse, Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, Cassatt, Morisot, Degas, Van Gogh and Gauguin….


"Queen of Hearts" oil and gold leaf (1860) photo does not do it justice

“Queen of Hearts” oil and gold leaf (1860) my photo does not do it justice

…that is where I draw my inspiration from 😉


Cold Weekend

41We had a wonderful long weekend this month. And my bear and I took a small trip to Lesotho to play in the snow and relax. Just the two of us. It was awesome. Very cold but awesome!

Our weekend picture story – abreviated 🙂



Full moon was here on June 23, 2013

This full moon is not only the closest and largest full moon of the year. It was also the moon’s closest encounter with Earth for the whole year of 2013. (The moon will not be so close again until August, 2014.)

In other words, it’s not just a supermoon. It’s the closest supermoon of 2013.

So of course my photographer went out in the cold winter nights to photograph the supermooon. It is a beautiful sight any time of the year, but on these occasions it is larger and brighter, makes some people go crazy and others just stare at it in awe.

And I truly believe that under the African sky there is nothing more beautiful than our moon



Drive Home

On our drive back from a wonderful December holiday, we drove pass a very beautiful and pleasant surprise. I didn’t know about the existence of this dam, and I’ve lived here for ever!! Always discovering new wonderful things, places and people in SA.

It was extremely hot on that day and very bright. We stopped for a few minutes to take some pics of this awesome sight!

Gariep Dam is located on the Orange River in the Free State.

Gariep Dam (wikipedia)

The wall is 88 m high and has a crest length of 914 m and contains approximately 1.73 million m³ of concrete. The Gariep Dam is the largest storage reservoir in South Africa. In South African English, dam refers both to the structure and the lake it impounds. Gariep Dam has a total storage capacity of approximately 5,340,000 megalitres (5,340 hm³) and a surface area of more than 370 square kilometres (140 sq mi) when full. The hydro-electrical power station houses four 90 MW generators, giving a maximum output of 360 MW of electricity at a water flow rate of 800 m³/s.

Here are some photos my photographer captured in that midday heat. Beautiful memories we will have forever….

Pan 1

Pan 3

Pan 5

I love her for the perfection of her days
The crisp Karoo morning
The Joburg winter noon
The late summer Cape Town sunset
The star-filled Free State night
By: Ian Macdonald

Pan 2

 i ♥ SA

Tradition on the beach

On one happy day of our December beach holiday; just as the sun was setting and we were getting ready to leave, a small group of traditional Xhosa people arrived. We watched them doing a cleansing ritual.

While my photographer enjoyed himself with his camera and took awesome photos I played and made patterns on the beach sand….my favorite pastime.

I did get a great pic of him in the water with his camera – love that photo!

No guessing which photos are his and which are mine 😀

Port Alfred-20121228-00672


Port Alfred-20121228-00673


Port Alfred-20121228-00665



i ♥ SA