Cape Town-based artist, Andrea du Plessis, 40, has been announced as the winner of the 2021 Sasol New Signatures Art Competition.
Du Plessis won the coveted title for her mixed media work Paloceae Lupantozoa. The work is inspired by Martin Johnson Heade’s “Orchids and Hummingbirds” series. The artwork consists of a painting created through the traditional oil on canvas technique that can also be experienced as a multi-sensory animated video. The video component of the artwork, which includes sound, is accessed via an Augmented Reality (AR) animation of the oil painting. By downloading an App on their digital device and pointing their camera towards the painting, viewers activate the Artificial Intelligence sound and video animation sequence which literally brings the painting to life on their digital device. “The oil painting and AR video create a link between past and contemporary representations and experiences of nature. By juxtaposing the 19th century Romantic tradition of painting with emerging technologies, the artwork creates a tension-filled interface, momentarily transporting the viewer into a familiar yet alien world. But most crucially, experienced in its multiple modalities, the artwork offers the viewer an opportunity to reflect on their relationship with nature and our changing landscape,” said du Plessis.
As the winner of Sasol New Signatures, du Plessis walks away with a cash prize of R100 000 and the opportunity to have a solo exhibition at the Pretoria Art Museum in 2022.
Sasol has been the sponsor of the competition for 31 years. “We remain committed to play our part in supporting the arts through this prestigious competition because we recognise the integral role it plays to mirror and record where and who we are as a society, both collectively as a nation and for artists’ personally. Our role in the arts is a shining example of our purpose in action. A purpose we will live up to as we continue to play our part in advancing the interests and developmental needs of artists at all levels. We are not just a sponsor, we are a partner in the development and growth of the arts.” said Elton Fortuin, Sasol Vice President: Group Communications and Brand Management.
Pfunzo Sidogi, who was appointed Chairperson of the competition in 2019 said, “It has been an absolute privilege to oversee the return of the Sasol New Signatures Art Competition. As I contemplate my first year as Chairperson, I am humbled by the significance this competition holds in the imaginaries of visual artists throughout the country. I was impressed by the amazing response we received from artists at all the regional collection points, and equally gratified by the quality and narrative power of the artworks submitted. Thank you to all the artists who entered the competition – your art indeed matters”.
Coming in second place and winning R25 000 was Dalli Weyers from Johannesburg. He wins for his work titled Forward: A manifesto created in the artist’s preferred medium, plastic bags. “Plastic bags, through a process of photo-degradation, disintegrate but don’t break down completely. Instead, they turn into microplastics that remain in the environment for centuries. The use of this medium thus reflects both the detritus and progress made throughout history – both present and unseen – that the manifesto hopes to draw from and address” he said.
The 5 Merit winners were:
Nico Athene (Cape Town)
Cultivating our Unbecoming: with Gabrielle Youngleson and Johno Mellish (2021)
Michèle Deeks (Pretoria)
Sibaninzi Dlatu (Gqeberha)
A story of resiliency
Fired clay (bisque)
Eugene Mthobisi Hlophe (Durban)
The new crazy normal
Monica Klopper (Pretoria)
Shed snake skin and epoxy
Each Merit Award winner received a R10 000 cash prize.
“The arts remain as relevant as ever. With an increased emphasis on mental well-being during times of isolation and quarantine, we have seen many people turn to creative activities to help work through these trying times. We salute all artists who, despite the current challenges, have continued to practice their craft and dream of the impossible. Each and every artwork submitted this year has an inspiring story to tell” added Elton.
Patrick Rulore, winner of the 2019 Sasol New Signatures Art Competition will have his first solo exhibition that forms part of his prize. The exhibition comprises of 15 paintings, all of them oil on canvas. The series explores human connections against the backdrop of an ephemeral world of light and shadow. “These paintings form part of my Stage 4 moments series which captures typical moments in many South African households during load shedding. While it is undeniably unwelcome, load shedding has disrupted the normal scenario where individual family members are effectively isolated from each other, being immersed in the escapist realities offered by electronic devices like cellphones and televisions” said Rulore.
Patrick Rulore’s solo exhibition and the Sasol New Signatures Art Competition exhibition, featuring the work of the 2021 winners and finalists, take place at the Pretoria Art Museum from 11 November 2021 till 9 January 2022. All the finalists are included in the highly respected competition catalogue.
Sasol may, in this document, make certain statements that are not historical facts that relate to analyses and other information which are based on forecasts of future results and estimates of amounts not yet determinable. These statements may also relate to our future prospects, developments and business strategies. Examples of such forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding exchange rate fluctuations, volume growth, increases in market share, total shareholder return, executing our growth projects (including LCCP), oil and gas reserves and cost reductions, including in connection with our BPEP, RP and our business performance outlook. Words such as “believe”, “anticipate”, “expect”, “intend”, “seek”, “will”, “plan”, “could”, “may”, “endeavour”, “target”, “forecast” and “project” and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements, but are not the exclusive means of identifying such statements. By their very nature, forward-looking statements involve inherent risks and uncertainties, both general and specific, and there are risks that the predictions, forecasts, projections and other forward-looking statements will not be achieved. If one or more of these risks materialise, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, our actual results may differ materially from those anticipated. You should understand that a number of important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from the plans, objectives, expectations, estimates and intentions expressed in such forward-looking statements. These factors are discussed more fully in our most recent annual report on Form 20-F filed on 28 August 2018 and in other filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. The list of factors discussed therein is not exhaustive; when relying on forward-looking statements to make investment decisions, you should carefully consider both these factors and other uncertainties and events. Forward-looking statements apply only as of the date on which they are made, and we do not undertake any obligation to update or revise any of them, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Please note: One billion is defined as one thousand million. bbl – barrel, bscf – billion standard cubic feet, mmscf – million standard cubic feet, oil references brent crude, mmboe – million barrels oil equivalent. All references to years refer to the financial year 30 June. Any reference to a calendar year is prefaced by the word “calendar”.