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Thursday, June 30, 2011

relaas …

(relaas... ”ringe. ringe, rosie” by Rosemarie Marriott)

Currently running in the KZNSA’s Mezzanine Gallery is a solo exhibition by Rosemarie Marriott. Titled relaas … (Afrikaans for a narrative story) it represents a significant development in her oeuvre.

The sensitivity with which she intuitively manipulates her material to form her objects and childlike forms indicates her sophisticated mastery of concept and medium.

In this new body of work she engages with themes from children's stories and nursery rhymes which carry an underlying message. She attempts to capture the way a child might see and interpret that message, which does not always correspond with the story as it appears.

In relaas…, Marriott ‘plays’ with a combination of human and imaginary forms to create a body of sculptures made from found objects and natural materials. Some of the pieces are organic forms ‘trapped’ in bronze. It seems as if her works attempt to capture the life or the soul as it leaves the body - almost as if it is the time before death, however long before this may have been.

A paramount force in her art-making practice is the combined act of collecting material such as animal skin or parts (from taxidermists and local farms) and the visceral transformation of that material into often tender or startling new forms. Marriott’s intuitive responses to the specific tactility, texture and colour of chosen material (skins, bones etc.) dictates how far the material can be manipulated and transformed. Inchoate ideas develop through working in a labour-intensive way, recognising the potency of the dead animal and realising a new sculptural incarnation from that close proximity and touch.

The redemptive quality of giving renewed life to dead or discarded objects is a primary motivation in her work.

relaas … runs at the KZNSA Gallery until July 23. The KZNSA Gallery is situated at 166 Bulwer Road, Glenwood, in Durban. More information on 031 277 1703, fax 031 201 8051 or cell 082 220 0368 or visit