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Nicky Marais - NEW WORK2 December to 22 December 2013

Omba Gallery was proud to host a solo exhibition of recent works by Nicky Marais. Her first in five years, the exhibition ran from Monday, 2nd December 2013 to Sunday, 22nd December 2013. The nature of non-representational fine art with its conscious departure in the depiction of imagery from recognisable objects and visual references in the world, results in art bearing no trace of reference to anything recognisable.

The past fifteen years have seen Nicky Marais’ work follow an increasingly non-representational trajectory. Colour, shape and line combine on paper and canvas to create paintings of formidable intensity. She expresses an obsession with the random patterns of contemporary urban life sharply contrasted with the orderly patterns of natural objects, the underlying premise for the artwork at this exhibition. The artworks express her fascination with not only pattern but also the movement created by juxtaposing different shapes in repetition, in a variety of complex compositions.

Very large and very small works by Marais were exhibited at Omba Gallery with the intention to recreate for the observer, the contrast and tension she uses as subject matter in the works. The exhibition also includes ‘Small Books’ of art, visual records substantiating the inner force compelling Marais to constantly create.

The exhibition was opened by Immaculate Mogotsi, coordinator of and lecturer in the Multi-disciplinary Research Centre (UNAM) and Chairperson of the Board (Sister Namibia). Nicky Marais is currently the head of the Department of Visual Art and Craft College of The Arts (COTA), in Windhoek. This exhibition was her seventh solo exhibition and her first exhibition in five years. 
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Riveting ... by Frieda Lühl15 November to 30 November 2013

Artistic jeweler, Frieda Lühl, is finally home after spending many years abroad training as a goldsmith and living in Cape Town, South Africa, where she also opened her first studio. In April 2013, she opened a studio in Namibia and Omba Gallery was the venue for her third solo exhibition, aptly named ‘Riveting’.

The word ‘riveting’ has two meanings when used in reference to jeweler Frieda Lühl. Firstly, ‘riveting’ is a relatively well-known technique used to connect, join and fasten material without the application of heat. In Germany, traditional riveting incorporates soldering to join metals for setting stones and other materials. Secondly, the word ‘riveting’ is also an adjective to describe and engrossing experience, similar to ‘fascinating’, ‘gripping’ and ‘intriguing’, all of which are suitable adjectives for Frieda Lühl’s latest collection of jewelry.

Unique, handcrafted pieces of jewelry made with a variety of metals, stones and materials ranging from silver and gold to diamonds, other precious stones, pearls, including rare natural materials combine to serve as physical manifestations of the vision and inspiration which motivate the artist, Frieda Lühl. Her quest to present jewelry so aesthetically pure and unique is no longer an endeavour after expression; it has evolved into a defiant confidence drawing strength from her impressions of light, form and line.

The approximately 100 pieces of jewelry on display at the upcoming exhibition were made using the riveting technique which Frieda rediscovered in Liverpool, United Kingdom, while participating in an artist residency programme. She extensively experimented with the technique and discovered that if used in conjunction with conventional soldering, the possibilities were endless.

Recently, she explored the technique of ‘etching’ printed drawings and patterns on metals and was inspired by the discovery of a dealer in Windhoek, offering the most beautiful of precious stones, cut locally. 
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The World is your Canvas by Daniela Magg21 October to 10 November 2013

Daniela Magg is a ‘born and raised’ native of Windhoek, Namibia. After completing high school, she furthered her studies in the field of ‘biokinetics’, a scientifically designed set of physical activity programmes tailored to individual needs, in Pretoria, South Africa, for a period of five (5) years. Upon her return to Namibia she opened a biokinetics practice in the suburb of Katutura, in partnership with her brother.

Her interest in art emerged at a very young age when she started drawing cartoons while appraising life and her surroundings with an open mind, augmented by a wonderful, internal world of fantasy. As her levels of maturity, confidence and skill in her craft developed, she increasingly longed to express her interpretation of the world beyond the usual boundaries and limitations. This is apparent from the unusual material she selects to function as painting surfaces such as a good piece of wood she found at a scrap yard or on the side of the road, instead of canvas stretched over a wooden frame. Environmentally conscious, Daniela adds dimension to her work by preferring to recycle ‘used and found’ items into her art.

The unique painting surfaces aside, Daniela Magg isolates an object in her paintings, for the purposes of aesthetic emphasis, and presents it as a three-dimensional junction to the actual painting (separate and yet part of), thereby lending depth and exclusivity to each work, subconsciously hinting at more than what is apparent to the naked eye.

Daniela Magg’s unique and in her own words ‘a little strange’ exhibition is aptly christened ‘The World is Your Canvas; Paint Your Own Picture’. 
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