Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Marlene and me

I was just doodling, really, with watercolour and brown ink today - using a picture of Gwen Stefani from a magazine to try out a watercolour portrait, when serendipitously (long word!) an interview started on Radio 702 with Jenny Crwys-Williams talking to Marlene Dumas, whose first SA exhibition starts at the Standard Bank Gallery tonight, having ended it's run in Cape Town. (She is well-known for her watercolour portraits, many of which are taken from magazine images, and sometimes of 'celebrities'. We're obviously totally in synch, us two famous artists!)
I am very proud to boast that I was at Michaelis School of Fine Art at the very same time as Marlene, and remember her well as a beautiful, lively and friendly person around the campus. She, of course, was a Fine Art student, already causing a bit of a stir - I remember her having her photo taken with all the lecturers in the quad, probably when she was chosen to take up her scholarship in Amsterdam - while I was a lowly and not very dedicated Graphic Design student. How I wish I could have those years back and take full advantage of the opportunities I didn't realise I had at that time...maybe I would also be selling paintings for millions of dollars by now... well I can dream, can't I?


Vivienne said...

What a lovely portrait. You SHOULD be just as famous, and I think you will be. Was it Marlene Dumas' work we saw in the National Portrait Gallery in London, at the BP competition?

Cathy Gatland said...

No, not there - we saw two (rather macabre) works of hers in the Tate Modern...or was that Ginny and me?;-/ If you click on her name I've linked it to the Saatchi website which has some of her stuff - there are lots of other links if you google her -
Thank you so much for your loyalty and confidence - it's really a bit late in the day, and as she said in the interview, an artist has to focus - not my strong point!

Gillian said...

This painting made me think of Marlene Dietrich too!! Maybe Gwen was influenced by her in "the look."
I vaguely remember you talking about M.D. in a museum, Cath. I looked at some of her work online; she is clearly so talented - but quite dark mentally. I prefer being uplifted by the art I see, not depressed! The world is sad enough!

Fourborne said...

This is wonderful.