I have developed a great love of the African bush and its animals, travelling in Botswana, Namibia and South Africa. This soon meant that I began taking photos of my encounters with the wildlife. It became a natural progression then to transform and simplify them on my canvases.
‘Give it Horns’ Series
“I have for the past few years been working on a series of works titled ‘Give it Horns.’ The works have incorporated a number of African symbols with meanings such as ‘hope,’ ‘perseverance,’ ‘unity,’ ‘balance,’ etc. The symbols reflect the processes and mindsets we need to create in order to stop the senseless killing of rhinos and other species. Some of the symbols are Andrinka symbols (West African), whilst some I have created from our own local Xhosa heritage.”
The ‘Bang Bang’ Series
In the ‘Bang Bang’ series, (see example second from Ann’s Portfolio top), I take my experience of living in Africa’s disappearing wildness and blend it with iconic commercialism. I see the two elements fighting for dominance. Painting this dynamic then becomes a therapeutic way of healing the paradoxical forces of creativity and destruction at play within myself. ”
I work to build up a painting adding layers and more symbols each time, only to then start the process of slowly stripping away. This creates a new ‘landscape’ that can bear little resemblance to the underlying image. Like the books I write, it involves adapting and editing – a constant process of evolving until the result feels (almost) balanced.