• Lizelle Kruger

    Lizelle Kruger
    • Artist Statement
      • The title of my Karoo series paintings, Karoo-kado’tjies, means small gifts from the Karoo. ‘Kado’ is derived from the French word ‘cadeaux’, which means present. These ‘kado’tjies or small gifts, form part of the objects from my past with which I like to surround myself, connecting me to blissful childhood memories. Often rusted and weathered, these objects are tangible representations of the transience to which all forms of life and objects on earth, whether man-made or created by God, are subject to.

        All works which forms part of the ‘Karoo-kado’tjies’ series have their origin somewhere between Merweville and Sutherland. It is only in the Karoo that I can become myself again. The Karoo is full of ‘kado’tjies. The dry, outstretched plains unfold to expose their ‘kado’tjies’ to you in a silent manner, whether hidden away in a beautiful sunset that vanishes over Windheuwel’s koppies, or a ‘koesnaatjie’ that can feed your soul with its succulent-beauty. Unexpectedly you may chance upon an eroded enamel bowl or a derelict farmstead, its weathered wood revealing remnants of red or green paint, the very presence of these artifacts and structural remains, making the absence of the lives, which were lived here, very strongly felt.

        The Voortrekker bonnet is a continuation of the theme of the Voortrekker outfit I made for my Barbie doll as a little girl. This was after my mother stitched together such an outfit. The combination of old and new lends unique meaning to the Karoo series, and allows the work to fit comfortably within a contemporary art context. I enjoy the strong visual narrative aspect of these paintings.
    • Biography
      • N.Dip Fine Art (Cape Peninsula University Of Technology)

        Contemporary visual artist Lizelle Kruger works in a variety of media from a studio in Cape Town.  Known for her detailed paintings depicting a nude woman with white bonnet -  a trademark of the artist’s oeuvre -  the artist takes her inspiration from the South African people and landscapes, which give her pieces a distinctly local aesthetic.

        Her latest body of work however, makes a dramatic departure. Kruger uses a subdued colour palette in her loosely painted, impressionistic charcoal and oil “drawings” in which  she delves into the Mother City’s past. Forceful removals and the ‘Sugar Girls’ of  District Six are juxtaposed with lively street scenes of Cape Town from the 1920s to 1960s.

        Having graduated with a Diploma in Fine Art Kruger subsequently joined the army, working in the production department of the SADF. A Volkskas and Brett Kebble Art Award finalist, she has exhibited both nationally and internationally, and her murals and sculptures for the SADF can still be seen at regimental headquarters around South Africa.  Her work is collected worldwide.                 

        Selected Exhibitions and Awards

        •    Finalist for the Volkskas Atelier  Competition in 1989 & 1991

        •    Finalist for the Brett Kebble Art Awards 2003

        •    Designed and sculptured a 7m x 2.3m ceramic mural for the foyer to the Armscor building - entrance of the SA National Defence Force

        •    Three of the artist’s pastel drawings were presented to Dr Franklin Sonn, a former South African Ambassador to the USA

        •    The artist’s works can be found in private collections in the UK, Germany, Austria, Australia, USA, Singapore, Ireland and the United Arab Emirates

        Exhibitions

            1993    SANDF Group Exhibition - Pretoria
            1994    One man Exhibition - Riversdale
            1996    Group Exhibition - The Castle, Cape Town
            2003    One man Exhibition - The Cape Gallery, Cape Town
            2006    Group Exhibition - Oisin Gallery, Dublin, Ireland
            2007    Group Exhibition – The Cape Gallery, Cape Town
                       Group Summer Exhibition – Oisin, Dublin, Ireland
            2008    Group Exhibition – Women in Art – Mondo Arte Gallery, UAE, Dubai
                       Group Exhibition – Salon 91 Contemporary Art Collection, Cape Town
            2011    One-man Exhibition  Salon 91 Contemporary Art Collection, Cape Town
            2011    One-man Exhibition - The Castle, Cape Town


    • Interview
      • Which new trends or South African artists do you find inspiring at the moment?
        Michael Pettit – I love his work, I have admired his work since I was a young artist in my 20s. He’s very dedicated.

        Which South African deceased artist do you most admire and why?
        Irma Stern and Maggie Loubser. Their use of colour and very bold expressionistic style appeals to me.

        Which exhibition that you have visited made the greatest impact on you and why?
        I’ve enjoyed seeing the exhibitions curated by the Oisen Gallery in Dublin - I took part in their summer and xmas exhibitions a couple of years ago. The curator always sources the most beautiful realism – such inspiring, good work.

        Where do you get your inspiration for your work?
        My latest series, Karoo work, comes from the area around Sutherland Tanqua-Karoo and Merweville in the Koup – inspiration comes from my roots as a child in the Karoo

        Do you have any rituals or habits involving your art-making that you can tell us about?
        Before I start painting I have a good breakfast, then I will light up 6 – 7 different incense sticks. I feel as though I’m dedicating my day to God when I start to paint. I also listen to Indian or Arabic music whilst I’m working.

        What do you like most about being an artist?
        I feel very blessed by God because it has made my life so exciting – circumstances, projects. I have the most interesting life, and have met the most interesting people, and travelled to amazing countries – all because of my art and God’s grace.

        How do you handle bad days when you experience artist's block?
        I believe that artist’s block is a fable and deny that it exists, and that to be an artist it’s about discipline. And that you should just sit down and work through the difficult days – lack of inspiration is an excuse not to work.

        What is your greatest achievement as an artist to date?
        My exhibition in 2011 – I’ve had them before – but this exhibition was about my body of work, my ideas that had come out of my past and soul. I’d created my own theme and identiy, whereas before I would have drawn my ideas from foreign influences, people I met, or local themes. I am very proud to have my own identity as an artist as it has taken me so many years to establish this as I have grown as an artist

        Do you feel that you want to make a difference to the world or in people's lives? If yes, how?
        Absolutely. One thing I really don’t want to do is create morbid art – art should uplift people, make their lives beautiful. I want to create beauty that people can enjoy – there is beauty in ordinary everyday things such as derelict farm houses, rusted plates – and I want to show that beauty to the world.

        What are your plans for the coming year?
        I’m working towards my next exhibition but I have decided to enjoy life and live life more, not just sit and paint all the time. Spend more time with my family and go on trips to new places both at home and abroad.

    • Video
  • The Magnificent Snake Charmer - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    The Magnificent Snake Charmer
    Painting / 30 x 30 cm
    R4 050
  • Tribute To The Domestic Worker - Mixed Media by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Tribute To The Domestic Worker
    Mixed Media / 68 x 53 cm
    R7 100
  • White Swan - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    White Swan
    Painting / 30 x 60 cm
    R7 100
  • District Six - Ernest Worley - Mixed Media by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    District Six - Ernest Worley
    Mixed Media / 80 x 45 cm
    R8 100
  • Rondebosch - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Rondebosch
    Painting / 72 x 62 cm
    R8 250
  • Odalisque - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Odalisque
    Painting / 112 x 125 cm
    R30 300
  • Out Of Town Engagement - Mixed Media by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Out Of Town Engagement
    Mixed Media / 95 x 42 cm
    R15 150
  • She Has Just Emerged From The Mist Of Her Opium Haze - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    She Has Just Emerged From The Mist Of Her Opium Haze
    Painting / 147 x 204 cm
    R55 500
  • Old Pier and Fishing Boats - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Old Pier and Fishing Boats
    Painting / 94 x 63 cm
    R15 000
  • They Rest Until Dawn Where Angels Are Reborn - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    They Rest Until Dawn Where Angels Are Reborn
    Painting / 78 x 62 cm
    R22 200
  • Gentlemen In The Rain - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Gentlemen In The Rain
    Painting / 202 x 147 cm
    R45 400
  • Flower Sellers, Adderley Street - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Flower Sellers, Adderley Street
    Painting / 193 x 91 cm
    R35 350
  • Fishing Boats, Roggebaai - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Fishing Boats, Roggebaai
    Painting / 139 x 82 cm
    R28 250
  • Cansu (The Turkish Girl) - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Cansu (The Turkish Girl)
    Painting / 143 x 197 cm
    R48 450
  • Shabdkosh - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Shabdkosh
    Painting / 191 x 128 cm
    R48 450
  • Adderley Street - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Adderley Street
    Painting / 75 x 108 cm
    R22 200
  • Adderley Street,1960s - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Adderley Street,1960s
    Painting / 123 x 89 cm
    R28 250
  • The Faith of the Chicken - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    The Faith of the Chicken
    Painting / 45 x 55 cm
    R18 700
  • Alex At The Window (Merweville) - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Alex At The Window (Merweville)
    Painting / 38 x 23 cm
    R18 200
  • Karoo Tranquility - Painting by Lizelle Kruger LIZELLE KRUGER
    Karoo Tranquility
    Painting / 57 x 83 cm
    R45 400
  • Muizenburg Pier - Painting by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Muizenburg Pier
    Painting / 30 x 30 cm
  • Afternoon Stroll On The Pier - Painting by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Afternoon Stroll On The Pier
    Painting / 63 x 61 cm
  • The Boxers - Mixed Media by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    The Boxers
    Mixed Media / 103 x 96 cm
  • Sunday Afternoon Drive - Mixed Media by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Sunday Afternoon Drive
    Mixed Media / 55 x 55 cm
  • Master Brain As Arabella Chump - Mixed Media by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Master Brain As Arabella Chump
    Mixed Media / 59 x 59 cm
  • Private Moment of Rest - Painting by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Private Moment of Rest
    Painting / 103 x 162 cm
  • Girls From District Six on Holiday - Painting by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Girls From District Six on Holiday
    Painting / 41 x 51 cm
  • After Midnight - Painting by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    After Midnight
    Painting / 147 x 197 cm
  • Reflections - Oil Painting by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Reflections
    Oil Painting / 44 x 53 cm
  • Sannie Het Gaan Water Haal Daar Onder By Die Dam - Painting by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Sannie Het Gaan Water Haal Daar Onder By Die Dam
    Painting / 91 x 138 cm
  • Madonna Bank met Rose Gloed - Print by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Madonna Bank met Rose Gloed
    Print / 40 x 32 cm
  • Namaqualand Daisies – Tanqua Karoo - Painting by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Namaqualand Daisies – Tanqua Karoo
    Painting / 43 x 43 cm
  • Karoo Kado'tjies Series - Print by Lizelle Kruger
    LIZELLE KRUGER
    Karoo Kado'tjies Series
    Print / 29 x 29 cm