This month we bring you a short little interview with Unsung Artist, Mardus du Plesis. Let’s jump right in…
What started you in your career of art? What sparked your interest in creating art?
I have always loved art for as long as I can remember. Thinking back however, my creative journey was sparked by a set of art books my Grandmother brought back from her first trip to the Netherlands. I could remember that I just wanted to start painting and so, at the age of 15, I started going to art classes. Unfortunately the school I attended at the time did not offer any art classes, however an opportunity presented itself to attend a school in KZN for four months which had amazing art facilities. It is only in recent years that I started to develop a real interest and love for photography.
Where are you based? Why there?
I’m based in Johannesburg North. I simply just love Johannesburg!
How would you describe your art?
Now that is a very good question, I would say my art is simplistic however sometimes it can be a bit more dramatic depending on the day and the mood I am trying to create or portray with the piece. Generally, I tend to work toward a “dramatic” or “wow feeling” when it comes to my pieces.
What inspires you to create art?
Definitely emotion. I love how a piece of art can make you feel a certain way – we all experience and see things differently and I definitely love hearing from different people what they feel when they look at my work.
We really love the works you have on the site with us – the collection of almost decaying angels and then the stunning photos of the fish market. How did those snaps come about?
Ah, cool thanks! The angels, which were photographed in a graveyard, looked a little dull on their own so I started experimenting with filters on Photoshop to see what I can come up with. I then wondered what it would be like if I scanned in some of my old damaged film to add some texture and dimension. After overlaying it all in Photoshop I was far more pleased with the Angel portraits and had them professionally printed and mounted.
The fish market on the other hand was just pure luck. The smell there was unbearable and I had to walk out of the fish market after a while. The guys unpacking the fish from their bikes were just doing their thing and ended up being great subjects for some candid snaps.
Who are some of your favorite artists (local and/or international)?
I have a few as I was very fortunate in that travelling allowed me to explore and find some great international artists like Marlene Dumas, Marijke van Warmerdam, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Rodger Ballen and Stephen L. Feldman.
Do you have any formal training/education relating to art or are you self-taught?
I have studied photography and taken art classes as mentioned from an early age – so it has always been around.
What is your favorite medium/art form both to create and view/collect?
To create my own works I would have to say oil paint and film are firm favorites. As for collecting, I don’t have a preferred medium.
Find all Mardus’ work available on our website over at this link. We hope you enjoyed this sweet and short interview learning about another of our fantastic Unsung Artists.
Until next time!