Previous Artworks > Aloes

The ‘Aloe’ series of 10 have acutely observed aloe paintings in coloured inks against a loosely applied background juxtaposed with simplified, unmodulated, schematic drawings that that make a poster of the whole. This juxtaposition serves to lift the almost botanical paintings out of the merely representational into layers of intellectual meanings. Each portrait of an aloe has a different schematic and sometimes there is a clearer relationship between the two: in “To Govern”, the aloe is flame like, relating it to the drawing of making fire. Is this a reference to the discovery of kindling fire as seen as the bedrock of civilization? Each “Aloe” leads one to question one’s interpretation arising from the combination of title, painting and drawing. Perhaps the series is also about an ambivalence of meaning that takes into account the usual gap between what the artist intended and the observer’s interpretation. The artist sees the series as playing with the extremes between “representation and visual metaphor”, the aloes as “particular and individualized” against the “generalized and impersonal” drawings. She says: “My initial personal “meaning” starts the process of interpretation and reinterpretation that becomes the extended “meaning” of this series of works.”

Veryan Edwards writing about the series: Aloes. Botswana, 2008