Ceramics honour the Kalahari

2016-02-16 06:00
Kalahari Cat Planter is one of the ceramic pieces that are part of the Ardmode exhibition that is opening on Friday 19 February at the Cellars Hohenot hotel.

Kalahari Cat Planter is one of the ceramic pieces that are part of the Ardmode exhibition that is opening on Friday 19 February at the Cellars Hohenot hotel.

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The Ardmore Ceramic Art Cape Town exhibition hosted annually at the Cellars-Hohenort Hotel in Constantia is back.

It will run from Friday to Sunday from 09:00 to 17:00 daily.

This year the exhibition feasts on the visual wealth of the Kalahari for its inspiration.

Standing as a testament to the way in which life is able to adapt and thrive in the harshness of extreme conditions, the Kalahari offered the Ardmore artists a thought-provoking fresh landscape and environment to work with.

Their growth in talent and ideas as a result of this new focus has been particularly interesting.

Ardmore founder Fée Halsted says this year’s Kalahari Cats exhibition has been the most challenging and exciting exhibition for the Ardmore team to ever work on and she thinks that this collection includes some of their finest works ever produced.

Ardmore ceramic art is associated with an abundance of colour and lavish plants with galloping exotic spotted and striped wild animals as subject matter.

The usual animals, like zebra, leopard, giraffe, elephant and crocodile, have been exchanged for meerkat, badger, aardvark, ostrich, bat-eared fox, cheetah and black desert rhino, while other interesting critters make an appearance too.

“This new wilderness is a unique landscape that heavily contrasts with anything else that our artists have worked on before. This is the first time they have had to use their expressive qualities to convey the stark and textured Kalahari, and they have responded to the plethora of Kalahari life with a new awakening and interest,” says Halsted.

Part of the line-up of the exhibition is Betty Ntshingila, known as the bird lady of Ardmore, who has been working with raptors as subject matter for the first time, as well as lilac-breasted rollers, scarlet-breasted shrike, korhaan and hornbills.

Her social weaver nest-like vases are works that Ardmore is looking forward to showcase to collectors at the exhibition.

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