An African Canvas - features artworks & paintings by Peter Pharoah - contemporary South African Fine Artist Peter Pharoah - contemporary South African Fine Artist - his unique artworks of Africa's wildlife, tribal portraits and contemporary abstract original and prints.
Peter Pharoah's collection of contemporary fine art originals & prints features contemporary African portraits, wildlife and abstracts in his unique style.
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The Pharoah Gallery in Wilderness
 Klein Karoo | Press Articles : 

Tracey Pharoah

Pharoah Art Gallery

Cell:+27 (0) 769762629
Tel: +27 (0) 769762629



A recent interview with Pauline Lourens of the George Herald

Question 1: Peter, following the fire in 2010, did you set off in a different direction or just found that you discovered a heightened enjoyment of putting onto canvas that which you truly love?

I think the fire allowed me to become more carefree in my approach to my work, I became less concerned about controlling everything. The fire made me realise that anything can happen and if you are to survive, your only choice is to pick up the pieces and move forward. Wallowing in misery will not change what has happened and by accepting this and focussing on the path ahead brings closure and a sense of liberation. Key to that transformation process was that I felt able to cast aside the safety of the ‘known’ and venture into the unknown with a boldness that encouraged a more experimental approach and a willingness to go places that I would not have gone before…

Question 2. Peter, I detect a new kind of atmosphere in your paintings (I visited a while ago when you were not there) how would you describe your work post fire? I was surprised to find a seascape -- your landscapes were always inland.

Again, despite the tragedy of losing so many artworks in the fire, the newfound freedom was liberating, I no longer felt a need to paint the works that were familiar to my existing client base and was determined to grow from the experience by exploring new subjects in a bold and almost audacious manner. This meant that I was able to find inspiration in new subjects, new styles and techniques and also in a vibrant approach to the use of colour to convey meaning and emotion whether in a black and white portrayal of a beach scene, a cheetah or a richly colourful portrait of a woman. Celebrating my freedom through paint also allowed me to realise that stepping outside of my comfort zone is not only necessary but essential to my growth as an artist and an individual.

Question 3. The landscapes which include wildlife and women with finely honed features wearing colourful tribal costumes - those are themes and colours that your followers enjoy - have you changed the formula somewhat or are you an instinctive artist that has creative forces welling up each morning? Do you feel simply compelled to record it all?

My passion for Africa will always compel me to experiment with new methods to convey the intensity of the African experience. Africa speaks to me on a deeper level and I have travelled to many remote corners in search of inspiration and the earthy ‘oneness’ I feel for the land. I have found that, as an artist, it is vital to constantly challenge oneself – introducing elements in the form of texture, colour or subject that I have never done before… this keeps my works fresh and my approach new each time… Simply put… I love what I do and am honoured to share my African visions with the world.

Question 4. Do the aerial perspectives that you enjoy from your Jabiru J430 aircraft, influence your paintings, or does it just heighten your enjoyment of the finer things in life? You have travelled quite extensively and do you ever work in situ?

Logistically the size of my canvasses makes it difficult to work ‘in situ’, I prefer to visit remote places and immerse myself in the experience. I take many photographs and engage with the wildlife and people experiencing the cultural diversity and bringing it back to my studio in Wilderness, the artworks that result are more a memory of that experience than just a representation of a specific photograph or scene. The flying, other than aiding me in my travels, frees my spirit and broadens my horizons (not only geographically but mentally too). Last year I travelled to Namibia and we are about to head off on a trip to Black Rhino Reserve in the Pilanesberg.

Question 5. Tell me briefly what attracts you to the Karoo and why have you opted for living part of the year there while you could be enjoying the coastal/lake splendours that we have here? Or phrased differently is it because you cherish the diversity that our country offers? and do you have a preference?

I enjoy escaping to remote and untouched landscapes with wide open spaces and solitude and the Karoo offers this in abundance. The Garden Route, and even Wilderness to a certain extent is growing and changing rapidly and I enjoy ‘getting away from it all’. I have just returned from our ‘farm’ having spent two weeks entirely alone without seeing another soul. I think it is essential to have a place that one can visit to escape the day to day routine of modern life – I call it ‘rebooting the soul’.

Question 6. Are you planning to farm anything at your Karoo property?

Our Karoo escape is purely a place for relaxation, hiking in unexplored hills and valleys untouched by man. The Karoo is a harsh and unforgiving environment with extreme weather conditions, only the really hardiest of creatures and plants can survive this primeval landscape. There are a myriad of treasures to discover in the patterns in the rocks, the amazing succulents and incredible birdlife – the only farming I intend to do there is for inspiration…

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