Our Artists

Pieter Swanepoel

Pieter Swanepoel is a South African-born artist who completed his undergraduate studies in Fine Arts (BAFA) at the University of Pretoria and received his Master in Visual Arts (MVA) cum laude from the University of South Africa.

He worked as a journalist, art critic, photographer and creative director before turning to a career in education in 1994 when he founded the then Roodepoort College Department of Art.

As an educator within the Visual Arts, he taught at various tertiary institutions throughout South Africa over a period of twenty-five years. His teaching included a wide variety of subjects, such as Graphic Design, Illustration, Copy Writing, Photography, Performance Art, Painting, Cultural Studies, History of Art, and Theory of Fine Arts.

At these academic institutions, he chaired and sat on a number of boards and committees, peer reviewed papers and art exhibitions, served as an external examiner for many other tertiary institutions of learning, adjudicated numerous national art competitions, delivered papers at conferences, and published articles in peer reviewed journals and chapters in books. He has participated in over 120 exhibitions, and has curated and written catalogues for art exhibitions.
Since 2015 his focus has been on his own art practice. He paints in oils, acrylics, and in watercolour.

At heart, the paintings are approached in an abstract manner and not as an effort to ‘copy’ nature. Although all the paintings reference nature, the technical approach and content may vary significantly. Some paintings will be more realistic while others are quite abstract.

His approach remains experimental; he constantly explores alternative avenues of expression. At times, he will juxtapose transparent layers of paint against opaque colours, and/or explore the impact of scattered light against dark, often resulting in what has been described as dramatic compositions.

Most of his paintings are evocative and rely on atmospheric imagery. They explore the innate power and dynamic of light and dark, of form and colour. At the same time, the works do not prescribe a particular understanding but rather tend to stimulate an individual imaginative interpretation in the viewer.