• Deidre Maree

    Deidre Maree
    • Artist Statement
      • The subject of my work is the medium of oil paint. The concept is to record an investigation into the nature of oil paint, and to acknowledge that the process of exploration and discovery is ongoing. The painted solution to a visual reference will take different forms along my painting journey. Through constant dialogue with the medium a rich, truly crafted, painterly surface is sought.

        Since the work is figurative, the stimuli for each of these investigative pieces are the photographs I take and the interpretations and memories of what I have seen. The very personal act of witnessing and recording is then expressed through a manipulation of compositional elements to demonstrate a response to space, colour, light and form. By representing the natural and emotional world with dignity the painting becomes a description of both the physical and metaphysical, and a reflection of a state of being.
    • Biography
      • B.A. Fine Arts (Kwazulu Natal University)

        I have been teaching primary school art in Durban for the last 20 years. With the change in my employment status (I became a part–time art teacher at the beginning of 2009) I was able to pursue my other passion - painting.

        Selected Exhibitions:


        "Transition" THE  BREATHING SPACE, DURBAN December
        "Own a Space 2" LOADING BAY GALLERY August
        "KZNSA Artists and Crafters" KZNSA GALLERY July
        "Own a Space 1" LOADING BAY GALLERY  July
        "'Annual Members' Exhibition" KZNSA GALLERY February


        "Opening" LOADING BAY GALLERY December
        "Affordable Art Fair" ARTSPACE, DURBAN  December
        "Anthropology III" THE BREATHING SPACE November
        "From Where I Stand" ARTSPACE, DURBAN September
        “Durban - Yesterday, Now and Tomorrow” - Inspiration VI ARTSPACE, DURBAN July 2015 "Vinyl, LP, Record" ARTSPACE, DURBAN June
        "When my eyes are open" THE BREATHING SPACE  March

        "Anthropology II" THE BREATHING SPACE  October
        “Exhale” ARTSPACE, DURBAN June
        "Gather - Student art show" ARTSPACE, DURBAN

        "11th Annual Affordable Art Show"  ARTSPACE, DURBAN December
        "Decipher" ARTSPACE, DURBAN November
        ABSA KKNK ARTKAROO, Oudtshoorn April
         “Portraits Show” ARTSPACE, DURBAN December 

    • Interview
      • Which new trends or South African artists do you find inspiring at the moment?
        A current fascination for me is the growing culture of urban and street art. It is increasingly sophisticated in content and execution, often investigating the evolving relationship we have with  the environment. Many contemporary artists working in a number of different disciplines continue to inspire - Daniel Naude, Christiaan Diedericks, Andries Gouws, Benjamin Coutouvidis.
        Which South African deceased artist do you most admire and why?
        Pierneef and Stern - both continue to inspire me through their personal interpretation of the subject. The works transcend the image and become an interpretation of the subject. Pierneef's use of shape and juxtaposition of colour has created landscape paintings of simplicity and stature while Stern's bold use of colour and mark has left us with paintings rich in emotion. Both still speak strongly about the world in which we live..

        Which exhibition that you have visited made the greatest impact on you and why?
        "Rodin and Dance - The essence of Movement" 20 October 2016 - 22 January 2017 at the Courtauld Gallery, London. The immediacy of Rodin's drawings, intended as studies for sculptures, were in themselves masterpieces for me. By drawing the dancers while they performed in his studio, he created succinct images stripped of excess that were full of vitality, energy and joy. The fervour and passion of his unending experimentation, even in the final years of his life, is a source of immense inspiration to me.

        Where do you get your inspiration for your work?

        Everywhere! - as an art teacher and practicing artist everything I see is a potential art lesson or  painting opportunity. For both the lesson or painting, it's not the photograph I take - they are seldom fine photographs - but the interpretation, or investigation of that image that results in a work that resonates. An investigation of a particular theme is then often pursued over a number of artworks. 

        Do you have any rituals or habits involving your art-making that you can tell us about?

        Like sharpening all my pencils first? Not really......

        What do you like most about being an artist?

        I love the excitement I experience, alone in my studio, when  facing a challenge which only I can solve. Each painting is a roller-coaster ride of feeling up and down over the choices made and the painting that "happens".

        How do you handle bad days when you experience artist's block?
        I do "admin". Or go through decades of photographs, or square up, or go photographing... I don't think inspiration comes without work, so I try to be disciplined about remaining constructive.

        What is your greatest achievement as an artist to date?
        When I became a part-time teacher it allowed me time to focus on my own artwork. My greatest ambition, then, was to have an exhibition. I am very pleased to have exhibited often since that first, epic, show.

        Do you feel that you want to make a difference to the world or in people's lives? If yes, how?

        We live in an increasingly visual world where  the ordinary or mundane is often overlooked. I like to find beauty in unfamiliar places and encourage others to see it, too.  

        What are your plans for the coming year?
        I am working on a show of miniatures that opens in July, and am very excited about developing the theme into much larger works that explore the relationship we have with our environment, and our history.