Kirstenbosch march 2014-03-10

Before reading what I have prepared I want to share a comment by one of the organisers, Christine Cherry Jones; she commented how little time viewers give themselves to take in an image; they walk past, some spending more time … Read More

Seeking Eden

Casa Labia, December 10th Seeking Eden The two In Bloom exhibitions that preceded this show were a romantic or poetic reminder for us to acknowledge or re affirm our relationship with nature, with gardens and gardening. In this exhibition, Seeking … Read More

Jill Trappler – notion of being, moments of being, Essay by Marilyn Martin

Irma Stern Gallery 2009

“A consummated experience between picture and onlooker” (Mark Rothko)

This statement by Mark Rothko[i] captures Jill Trappler’s vision for both artist and viewer. It lays to rest the widespread myth, which originated with Clement Greenberg, that abstractionism is necessarily an art of pure perception, and affirms that reading, experiencing and absorbing a work of art goes beyond sensation, if for no other reason than for the concept of totality. Add to that its transcendental potentiality and you have a complex consummation.

Two recent solo shows, ‘Studio Conversation’[ii] and the work selected by Joe Wolpe for the exhibition ‘Jill Trappler Joe’s choice’, which spanned a period of thirty years, revealed a consummate artist who has consistently explored different modes of non-representational art in a variety of media.[iii] Trappler insists that she does not ‘abstract’ from anything; hers is an art of poetry and metaphor and associations that can emerge years after the visual stimulus registered; these are never literal, but contained and communicated in an astonishing variety of media.[iv]

Read MoreJill Trappler – notion of being, moments of being, Essay by Marilyn Martin

Notions of Being/Moments of Being – A Personal Response

I seldom have the opportunity to observe while someone else finalizes an exhibition.  So it was a rare and lovely chance for me to be present as Jill Trappler put the finishing touches to her exhibition Notions of Being/Moments of Being at the Irma Stern Museum.  On a sunny morning in December, I sat in the museum gallery and waited for the stories her work had to tell me.

The breeze from the windows gently lifted the works on paper away from the wall and played with the sculptural pieces mounted in the centre of the room.   The movement transformed the images of clothes into the garments they depicted, as though worn by an invisible fashionista.  As the artist adjusted one of the paper sculptures, I half expected her to take some pins from her mouth to improve the ‘fit’.  She looked more dressmaker than painter; her necklaces resembling a tape measure slung around her neck.

Read MoreNotions of Being/Moments of Being – A Personal Response

From the Jetty Series

The jetty is a simple structure, usually wooden in my world, which conjures ideas about how we reach out further away from the solid ground, where the extent of the sea and all its mysteries meet the complexities of mans life on land.

I don’t know who builds jetties, and how they decide where to put them: do the fishermen of a small river town want a place to fiddle and fish at all hours or is it the boat handlers that want to depart and return to this piece of landing connected to the mainland. Maybe it’s the lovers or loners that plan this extension deeper into the water to give them that sense of connection with the mystery and romance of the unknown? Do people vote on its need or position or do some people with craft and initiative just do it and leave the others in the town imagining the whole thing is part of the city planning or a natural order?

Read MoreFrom the Jetty Series

May 2006 “This is where we meet” An exhbition of paintings, KZNSA gallery Durban.

There is something unique about a meeting place, a “metaxy”, where personal boundaries coalesce and open up an offering for interaction and discovery. This exhibition explores the “in between space” or intermediate region where we meet. I have used paint, canvas and paper.

The transformation of raw material into cloth and its transformation into clothing, (leather, silk, appliqué, weaving, ikat) all carry a tiny content of the people engaged in their creation and the people who wear them. They suggest another time and place, other lives lived, a reality carried by their patterns, textures and colours. They beckon one into an intermediate space.

Read MoreMay 2006 “This is where we meet” An exhbition of paintings, KZNSA gallery Durban.

Jill Trappler; an exhibition at the AVA Gallery, Cape Town, February 2006. “This is where we meet”

There is something unique about a meeting place, a “metaxy”, where personal boundaries coalesce and open up an offering for interaction and discovery. This exhibition explores the “in between space” or intermediate region where we meet. I have used paint, canvas and paper.

The transformation of raw material into cloth and its transformation into clothing, (leather, silk, appliqué, weaving, ikat) all carry a tiny content of the people engaged in their creation and the people who wear them. They suggest another time and place, other lives lived, a reality carried by their patterns, textures and colours. They beckon one into an intermediate space.

Read MoreJill Trappler; an exhibition at the AVA Gallery, Cape Town, February 2006. “This is where we meet”

Opening the Western Cape doctors exhibition Nov 09

I really enjoy surprises like this; the ideas that many of us have of Doctors and doctors have of them selves are usually quite severe and unnerving. Ideas about artists? I suppose there are question marks and exclamations marks…. And of art groups, the ideas remain open to interruption! How can we begin to unravel this bundle of contradictions, similarities and projections? I would like to put forward a few clues and ask for some lateral thinking. (added that I enjoy group exhibitions as they give the viewer a chance to see various ways of painting a landscape for example and also for the images to relate to one another. Secondly that group activities like this assist people to interact tin a different way, especially in terms of learning from other work and preparing a show.)

This Initiative was started in 2002 by Peter Nicole and others. Peter had been a member of the S A medical art association for some years; The first show of the WC doctors group was in the foyer of the Kingsbury hospital and now alternates annually between Kingsbury and Constantiaberg hospitals. This year is the 8th exhibition and there are 32 doctors exhibiting. Each Dr./ artist selects the work they want to exhibit; there is no selection committee. There are a variety of media and the practitioners come from a variety of medical specialties’.

Read MoreOpening the Western Cape doctors exhibition Nov 09

SMAC exhibition February 2010 A personal response by Eithne Owens

Dear Jill,

Today I went back to SMAC to savour your exhibition, “Notions of Being / Moments of Being” and the spell had been broken.   Fairy Tales Updated (#16) had disappeared and so had Mirage Series (#12), that wonderfully balanced and powerful piece that kept Lavender Rain and The Sweetness of Juice in their place.   Blou Skil (#2) was absent and the space was vacant, as though abandoning Yellow River (# 1).  Some of the sculptured pieces were missing, most notably the woven piece # 8.  The threads of the conversation were broken. It made me realise what a beautifully curated exhibition this was, how each piece had been carefully selected both to balance the visual impact of the whole but also to exhibit the complexities of your oeuvre.

Read MoreSMAC exhibition February 2010 A personal response by Eithne Owens