Fiona is inspired by the great faces and animals of the African continent and creates striking large scale pieces in Graphite.
Somebody told me recently that when they looked at my art, it was like peering into the soul of that person… this is the reason I create.
Born in the United Kingdom in 1974, I graduated from the University of Johannesburg in 1994 with a National Diploma in Graphic Design. It was during this period I developed a passion for the arts and started to explore Fine Art, alongside Commercial Art (pursuing the latter as a career).
I have a need to communicate pictorially rather than with words. I try to push the limits of realism using both charcoal and graphite. I love these mediums for the drama and contrast I am able to create. For me it is important to feel constantly challenged. I try to capture the subject in an immersive, close-up way so that one is able to stare into the soul of that person/animal. I think the emotional reaction is so much greater that way. I feel I’ve successfully communicated with someone when they identify with the essence of a particular piece on a deeper level, and it brings about new thoughts or evokes certain emotions within them.
My collection is inspired by the great faces and animals of the African continent. Faces etched like maps to an Africa that exists in a timeless world. My aim is to capture the ageless ceremony, dignity and passion of that character – be it an animal or person. Just like the medium I use depicts contrasts, so too is the core of my subject matter. Beauty and grit, strength and humility, power and vulnerability.
After listening to that tiny whisper inside me, I picked up a pencil again for the first time in over 12 years in March 2019 and my first piece entitled “Farai” was entered into the Sanlam National Portrait Awards (South Africa) and was awarded one of the Top 40 Finalists, exhibited at the Rust-en-Vrede Gallery in Durbanville.
In February of 2020 I was selected by Hansford & Sons Fine Art of London as one of a handful of global emerging artists on their ‘Emerging Artist Platform’. Hansford and Sons are a UK based art investment company which guides both collectors and investors both in the UK and internationally. They set up the ‘Emerging Artist Platform’ to help showcase up and coming artists from all around the globe.
In May 2020, I was approached by Warren Cary of the Warren Cary Wildlife Gallery in Hoedspruit, Mpumalanga, South Africa – to showcase some of my works, particularly tribal portraits.
It has been so exciting to develop, and I love how my audience are engaging and supporting my progress. For me it was about being brave enough to listen to that tiny voice inside me and to acknowledge I do have a certain gift – yet constantly staying humble enough to know that there is always room for growth and evolution with each new piece. I try to stay constantly unsatisfied!
I currently live and work in Cape Town, South Africa.