The Knysna area is home to a vibrant art community
The art scene in Knysna is vibrant and varied, consisting of a multitude of artists spread throughout the area. And as different as the people are, so are their choice of materials and media, their styles and their sources of inspiration. What they do have in common, is their talent and their respect for the creative process.
Holmes the Creative
Hailing from Sedgefield, Holmes The Creative is a young, up and coming artist. But don’t discount him based on his youth. A talented and accomplished fine artist, Holmes also excels as an illustrator, muralist and 3D street artist. His striking oil paintings depicting scenes of rural life and portraits of its inhabitants grace walls in homes from Sedgefield to Germany. He has created impactful murals for local businesses and non-profit organisations like Kulisa in Cape Town. He has also showed his work in Cape Town at the Art is Art Gallery in Woodstock. Holmes feels a responsibility to shine a light on social issues that would otherwise be left ignored. “As an artist, you have an opportunity to work for sustainability by opening people’s eyes about social issues so that we van all work against them.” A talented and inspiring young man, Holmes The Creative is a young artist to watch.
Drawing on the area’s history in timber, Grant Ayton designs and creates solid wooden furniture and household items at Design Wise in Knysna. His work comes to life as functional pieces of art that not only serve a purpose in a home or office, but elevates the surrounding space as a visually stunning object. Grant, who was raised in Knysna, was taught the art of furniture making and the principles of good design by his parents. Well-travelled, he draws inspiration from the amazing landscapes and diverse cultures he has visited. But he still respects the influence of his hometown. “I’m privileged to live in a beautiful area and I have a deep respect for nature. I try to be sensitive, careful and selective with these precious natural materials, and to work as sustainable as possible.”
Endless, timeless and interchangeable, Julie Tugwell’s styles make for art that is in a constant change of existence and unconditioned rebirth. Working with many styles, Julie’s loyalty is to herself and her art. Rather than applying one style influenced by the industry, art dealers or her audience, the rebellious nature of her work is a commitment to her passion and conscientious journey. As someone who is continuously working at her craft, this tendency toward different approaches is a natural progression in expressing her evolving artist’s spirit. She is known for her fine art flowers, but her other work, venturing into the realms of the abstract, nudes, contemporary pieces, landscapes and pastel portraits should not be overlooked. Her work is regularly shown locally, notably at Knysna Fine Art Gallery, but she has also exhibited in the galleries of Cape Town like The Gallery at Grande Provence and Gallery One11, as well as Imbizo Gallery in Ballito. “I am currently working with instinctual colour fields that do not always depict or produce a focal point, but rather draws the viewer into seasons of sentiment creating a response to the overall painting.” One can’t help but feel very real emotional responses to Julie’s work.
* Article written by Jacques Marais – December 2020