About Anja Marais

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So far Anja Marais has created 116 blog entries.

Santa Fe Art Institute Residency [summary]

 

Sante Fe Art Institute Art Studio: Mixed Media work – “The Three Architects”

I attended the thematic “Truth and Reconciliation” art residency at the Santa Fe Art Institute this September.

I participated in an exhilarating dialogue with international artists regarding this complicated theme.

Voices participating were from Colombia, Israel, Native American, South Africa, Taiwan. etc.

From my Notebook:

As artists, we do not always have the answers but we do
make the unconscious conscious.

To make art you first need to consume yourself.
Devouring your own flesh until personhood is gone.
Only then you become the other.
When you are the “other” you are not the artist
you are part of the collective heart.

Jung said that until you make the unconscious conscious,
it will direct your life and you will call it fate.

Antonin Artaud declared that art was the double of life, a
duplicate reality. “We have a spirit so made that
it spends its life looking for itself … In becoming
conscious, it duplicates itself.

Artists as witnesses are duplicates,
they contain both the subject and the object.
the self and the other.
the truth and the lies.

Santa Fe Art Institute Art Studio – Work in Progress

By |2018-12-04T09:38:45+00:00September 25th, 2018|

Blue Star Contemporary [Exhibition]

Soot on the grass, 2016, Photo-collage transfer on Found Fabric and burnt wood, 28 in x 82 in x 8in

The Crossing, 2015, Mixed Media on Found Table Cloth, Soil, and Found Objects, 73in x 115in x 20in

FROM UNDERFOOT: BREAKING THROUGH SURFACE AND GROUND

ABOUT THE EXHIBITION:

The works in this exhibition feature in some shape or form the ground as part of the subject and the artists focus. The surface of the earth is depicted as an active space, laden with tension. The artists featured reflect on the landscape and emphasize changes above and below gravel and grass, with subtle yet moving references to natural and manmade disasters. We can also find themes of how we reflect on the passage of time and mortality through the landscape, with references of resurrection, rejuvenation, erosion, and growth.

Location: Blue Star Contemporary

Address: 116 Bue Star, San Antonio, Texas
Museum Hours: TH FR 10am-8pm | SA SU 10am-6pm 

By |2018-06-06T10:27:30+00:00June 6th, 2018|

Catalog for Bridge Red Exhibition [flip book]

By |2018-05-09T10:35:15+00:00May 9th, 2018|

The Mountain Without a Shadow [exhibition]

Location: BRIDGE RED
Address:
12425 NE 13TH AVE, North Miami, FL 33161
Dates: 
Friday, April 8, 2018 | 4 pm – 7 pm

Exhibition Ends May 27th


In “The Mountain Without a Shadow” themes of displacement and cultural heritage permeate Anja Marais’ work. Often using photography combined with found objects, her work is imbued with a ritualistic quality. Central to Marais’ work is the disintegration of material, creating apt metaphors for the human condition, geography, and memory.

Born in South Africa and now living in Miami, Marais’ work challenges the viewer to rethink the meaning of systematic conditioning. Photography forms the basis of much of her mixed media work, but she also employs more archaic materials like maize, soil, rust, etc to realize her works.

Whilst Marais’ work subtly alludes to the impact of racism in South Africa – a country immersed in political and social turmoil during her upbringing – her themes have a universal appeal. Marais reinforces this:

…. I am interested in interpreting direct experiences that contradict our conditioning. With first-hand experience we don’t see things as they are, but how we see them as we are. An opportunity to discover dissonance between what we know and what we are born with

The exhibition comprises nine of Marais’ most telling works from multiple projects around ‘the sins of the fathers’. In ‘The Transparency of Rocks‘, one of the larger pieces in the exhibition, Marais combines images of a child merging with rocks, a reflection on carrying the transgressions of our forefathers.

In ‘A Poem for the Sharpevilles‘, she uses press images from traumatic events in history and washes them away to recede and merge into the landscape, an attempt to memorialize landscape as a mute witness to the actions of man.

Also featured are recent sculpture works. These include found objects enmeshed with Maize. Corn is a staple food in Africa as in many other countries and is used in rituals of the ancestors.

Libation for the Lineage of the Unlived.” is a video work that combines ritual and ethnopoetics bringing the outside and ‘other’ world into the space of the gallery.

By |2018-04-05T06:50:57+00:00April 4th, 2018|

Libation for the Lineage of the Unlived [video art]


The Mountain Without a Shadow, or, Unfinished Business

I once walked past your front yard.

You waved me in.

 

Something appeared on the horizon when you looked out your living room window that day.

You had to show me.

 

A mountain, overnight, bricked itself in the firmament, cemented tight by cloud.

 

“Look!” you say.

“I did not see that yesterday, but when I woke up today, there it was!”

 

I felt the boulder stack more than I could see it, but yes,

it was there.

The way you can see a brain tumor in faltered speech.

 

You poured us each clear spirits in Mason jars and invited me to sit

outside on lawn chairs.

Together we watched the sun compete with stone.

 

The sun did not appreciate this new roadblock, it lamented.

 

“What do you think you are doing here? Can’t you see, I have

somewhere to be?”

 

The mountain sat mute.

 

The sun tried its work, this way and that, up, down, but was in a cul-de-sac.

 

It was then that we realized that mountain did not cast a shadow.

Its weight, without shade. Its demeanor, soundless.

 

But deep inside a fissure in its craggy side, we heard an old voice sing.

It was so familiar, I could smell my Mother,

It was so innate to my bones, I could feel my Grandfather move under the ground.

 

A song of displacement.

Of fallen soldiers,

grieving children,

wounded women,

caged animals,

and decapitated forests.

 

Most of all, it sang about its persistent thirst.

Parched and filled with yester-dust.

A silo throat devoid of unharvested maize.

 

This song of yearning urged us to get up and emptied our Mason jars.

Pouring the clear spirits onto the soil, seeping away.

As the mountain drank from our jars and right before it faded, we stood for a tick in its newborn shadow.

 

All that remained was the backside of the sun on its way.

 

By |2018-05-28T12:56:59+00:00April 2nd, 2018|