Broeigrond: Fertile Ground for Golden Regrets, a multidisciplinary solo exhibition by Ronél de Jager – and inspired by the Karoo landscape, geology, infrared photographic process and cosmology – received the KANNA award for Best Visual Art Exhibition at the 2017 KKNK (Klein Karoo Nationale Kunstefees).
Artist Statement for Broeigrond:
In this series of works, the artist constructs fictionalised landscapes which oscillate between the familiar and the alien; De Jager constructs artifacts of paintings, light-boxes, glass orbs with brass and copper electroplated flora and time-lapse film gathered from previous expeditions in the Karoo.
These artifacts present fertile landscapes with an energy potential, at the cusp of its revelation; they incubate our imagined future, thoughts and potential regrets. Beginning as a photographic process of experimentation, De Jager, uses infrared photography to investigate the characteristics of the landscape and found flora. These flora represent the biota of a specific landscape, period and people. These are then re-interrogated in her studio as she translates this into paintings and multimedia works. These images are painted as part of a meditative process of ‘searching’, contemplating these notions of latent landscapes.
Like a heat seeker the infrared analyses its components, tapping into magnetic fields which we cannot see as humans, providing us some kind of alternative universe where we may see these energetic fields and imagined futures through the landscape. It is this very mediation between scientific process and fine art object where De Jager actively teleports her viewer.
These artifacts consider time and space and play on the notions of memory as transcendental, ephemeral and intangible.
As an alter ego exists so it seems De Jager wishes to reconstruct herself through the reconstruction of these familiar spaces. The landscape becomes her internal universe; the infrared becomes the electromagnetic wave seeker, searching for the obscure, inspecting within the unknown.
The artist has announced plans to expand on the conceptual framework and visual language of the exhibition. Download the exhibition catalogue. Read more about Ronél’s plans on her website, or on Artslink >>