André François van Vuuren
Van Vuuren was born in Benoni near Johannesburg on the 15th September 1945. After matriculating, he studied graphic design at the Johannesburg School of Art 1965-1967, he then joined the Visual Arts Research Centre – a European- style teaching studio run by George Boys, one of South Africa’s leading Abstract expressionists at the time. In 1969 he exhibited on the New Signatures exhibition, which was held annually in Pretoria to showcase emerging talent.
Early works were abstract expressionist, exploring line and form, in mainly earthy tones. His first exhibition was held in 1970 in Johannesburg. In 1973 a work was accepted by the Royal West of England Academy in Bristol.
Between 1970 and 1980 held several solo exhibitions as well as participating in Group shows at leading galleries such as Goodman Gallery, and Lidchi Gallery in Johannesburg, and Neil Sack Gallery Durban.
From 1980 to 1998 his work was handled by the Crake Gallery in Johannesburg as well as showing in group exhibitions at Everard Read Gallery in Johannesburg.
In 1985 van Vuuren spent some time in West Germany, and his work became much bolder and more colourful inspired by the work of German expressionism. In 1985 he showed paintings at Galerie Maeder in Munich.
For a period in the early ‘90’s he had a studio in the centre of Johannesburg city where the street hawkers and mass action marches inspired an energetic style –
“stick men doing frenzied dances”. The work celebrated South Africa’s emergence from its authoritarian past into a democracy. These were exhibited at the Linder Auditorium in Johannesburg and then sent to Europe.They were shown 1994 at Genevieve Hasaerts in Brussels and 1996 at Christophe Meissenbacher in Trier, Germany.
In 1998 he started to hold exhibitions at his studio, Knysna Fine Art in Knysna. The same year he held a Solo exhibition at the Galerie Claude André in Brussels.
He is currently represented by Graham’s Modern and Contemporary Gallery in Johannesburg and RK Contemporary in Riebeek Kasteel, Western Cape.
In 1999 he visited Zanzibar and East Africa, His paintings after this mark a change in direction, exploring the East African landscape and the light and shade of Stone Town in Zanzibar.
A trip to Italy followed in 2000, where Venice and Tuscany became favorite subjects.
In 2017, he and his wife Valerie undertook a road trip through India, exploring Rajasthan, Agra and Mumbai.
He still however, has excursions into his abstract past.
He has work in many Corporate and Public collections in SA and abroad, such as the National Gallery Bloemfontein, Pretoria Art Museum, S A Reserve Bank, FNB, Swiss Life Belgium, and Bottner Reprotechnik Munich.
He is married with two sons and has four grandsons and one granddaughter. Lives and works in Riebeek Kasteel, Western Cape.
1970 Little Gallery, Sandown 1991 Ben Fourie, Pietersburg
1971 Champs Elysees Gallery, Hyde Park 1991 Desré Resnick, Cape Town
1972 The Downstairs Gallery, Benoni 1992 Linder Auditorium JCE
1974 Lidchi Art Gallery, Johannesburg 1994 Genevieve Hasaerts, Brussels
1975 Lidchi Art Gallery, Johannesburg 1995 Crake Gallery, Johannesburg
1977 Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg 1996 Crake Gallery, Johannesburg
1977 Gallery S, Nelspruit 1996 Christophe Meissenbacher, Trier
1977 Neil Sach Gallery, Durban 1997 Chris Crake Gallery, Johannesburg
1978 Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg 1998 Galerie Claude Andre, Brussels
1979 Gallery S, Pretoria 1998 Barnton Road Studio, Johannesburg
1980 Crake Gallery, Johannesburg 1999 Barnton Road Studio, Johannesburg
1981 Crake Gallery, Johannesburg 2000 Barnton Road Studio, Johannesburg
1986 Passe Partout, Johannesburg 2001 Barnton Road Studio, Johannesburg
1986 Elizabeth Gordon Gallery, Durban 2003 Barnton Road Studio, Johannesburg
1987 Crake Gallery, Johannesburg 2003 Lake Pleasant Hotel, Knysna
1988 University of Bloemfontein 2004 Knysna Fine Art Gallery, Knysna
1989 Karen McKerron Gallery, Johannesburg 2004 Zuva Gallery, Melrose Arch, Jhb
2004 Partridge/Jenny Blyth Oxford
1989 Ben Fourie, Pietersburg 2005 Obert Contemporary, Melrose Arch, Jhb
1990 Gallery 88, Sasolburg 2007 Barnton Road Studio, Johannesburg
1991 Studio, Johannesburg 2007 Gallery 88, Sasolburg
1991 Gallery 88, Sasolburg 2008 Barnton Road Studio, Johannesburg
1991 Ben Fourie, Pietersburg 2009 Graham’s Fine Art Gallery, JoBurg
2010 Graham’s Fine Art, Johannesburg
2012 Graham’s Fine Art, Johannesburg
2013 The Gallery, Riebeek Kasteel.
2013 Lovell Gallery CapeTown
2015 Graham’s Fine Art Johannesburg
2016 Solo Studios Riebeek Kasteel
2017 Solo Studios Riebeek Kasteel
2018 Solo Studios Riebeek Kasteel
2018 RK Contemporary, Riebeek Kasteel.
2019 Solo Studios Riebeek Kasteel
2020 RK Contemporary Riebeek Kasteel
1969 New Signatures Exhibition, Pretoria 1980 Crake Gallery, Johannesburg
1972 Lidchi Art Gallery, Johannesburg 1980 Gallery S, Nelspruit
1973 Lidchi Art Gallery, Johannesburg 1981 Crake Gallery, Johannesburg
1973 Royal West of England Academy, Bristol 1981 Everard Read Gallery, Johannesburg
1974 Lidchi Art Gallery, Johannesburg 1984 Everard Read Gallery, Johannesburg
1975 Lidchi Art Gallery, Johannesburg 1985 Everard Read Gallery, Johannesburg
1975 Gallery International, Cape Town 1985 Elizabeth Gordon Gallery, Durban
1976 Lidchi Art Gallery, Johannesburg 1985 Galerie Maeder, Munich
1977 Crake Gallery, Johannesburg 1994 Gallery 88, Sasolburg
2005 Jill Partridge Gallery Oxford UK 2000 Everard Read Cape Town
2015 Aepathy Equus Cavalli Estate
2016 Solo Studios. Riebeek Kasteel
2017 Solo Studios. Riebeek Kasteel
2018 Solo Studios. Riebeek Kasteel
2019 Solo Studios. Riebeek Kasteel
CORPORATE AND PUBLIC COLLECTIONS
S A Reserve Bank Videolab (Pty) Ltd
Nedbank Ltd Grindrod Shipping
Nedfin Bank Ltd Price Forbes Federale
First National Bank Ltd Wynalene Inv (Pty) Ltd
Bayerische Vereinsbank AG Intersteel Ore, Rio de Janiero
Anglo American Corporation Everite Ltd
Johannesburg Consolidated Investments Pretoria Art Museum
Johannesburg Mining & Finance National Gallery, Bloemfontein
National Gallery Capetown
Finansbank Ltd Corobrick
Fedlife Bottner Reprotechnik, Munich
Derby & Co Ltd Swiss Life, Belgium
Altron Ltd Transnet
Altech Ltd Nedcor
Zeratech (Pty) Ltd Investec Ltd
Tokara Wine Estate Barclays Bank
SOME PRIVATE COLLECTIONS
Dr W P Venter Mrs Mary Slack
Mr James McWilliams Mr & Mrs M du Toit
Dr Alistair Glicksman Mr & Mrs Tokyo Sexwale
Mrs G Thomas Mr J Halamandres
Mr R Venter Mr C Venter
Mr G T Ferreira Ms Avril Vignos
Mrs W Klevansky Mr Rex van Schalkwyk
Mrs Lorenne Rossouw Mr & Mrs J B Blignaut
Mr David Mostert Mr & Mrs Mike King
Ms Janet McKenzie Mr & Mrs Anton Thompson
Mr J Demetriou Mr & Mrs W J Wilson
Mr W J Wilson Jnr Ms Bridget Steer
Mr & Mrs Mark Orkin Dr C Daras
Mr Gunnar Wach Mr & Mrs C Wach
Mr & Mrs Bill Nairn Mr & Mrs Murray Winckler
Ms Jenny Hawthorn Mr R Crawford
Mr & Mrs D A Ewing Mr & Mrs J de Wet Kruger
Mr & Mrs Howard Walker Mr Paul Harris
Mr & Mrs Mark Edey Mr & Mrs Doc Crom
Mr & Mrs C J Giddy Mrs F Emmanuel
Mr & Mrs C Evans Mr & Mrs James Taylor
Mr & Mrs Mark Moses Mr & Mrs Justin Moore
Mrs Henriette Meyer Mr & Mrs C von Holdt
Mr & Mrs J Meiring Ms Annamart v d Merwe
Mr & Mrs J Clarke Mrs J Mcgrath
Sheik Whaled Juffali Ms Ilse Schutten
Mrs Joanne Hurst Mr & Mrs Ike Hasson
Mr Chris Hurst Mr H Hasson
Mr & Mrs Richard Kinross Mr Christopher Beatty
Mr & Mrs R Garrat Mr & Mrs R Price
January 14, 2020
Working through a painting
The blank canvas already has a painting on it. The trick is finding what’s there.
The first random marks are a sort of roadmap which leads to the next step, this might be an area of colour or a shape. Each brushstroke or form has a function to be used or discarded as the painting takes shape. My work is largely intuitive. By this, I mean, I may start out painting an abstracted landscape and as the painting evolves, figures or faces may start appearing and the work becomes figurative. I am never sure where my subconscious is going to lead my thoughts. This is a type of free association.
Many times, I have returned to an earlier work which I considered to have been finished only to find that the true direction of the work was something totally different to what I had intended but had not recognized as being in the painting. That is when I destroy what I had done by working over, or removing areas and relocating the elements or creating additional areas of colour or forms.
I do not intellectualize about my work or put any deliberate intellect into my work. I am excited by colour, shape and line and the emotional connection to what I do.” My work must, above all, contain emotion” (Pablo Picasso).
Whether I am painting a landscape, abstract, or figurative work, I paint what I feel not what I see.
©André François van Vuuren 2020