Widely regarded as the leading figure in the realist movement in southern Africa, John Meyer’s love of paint is at the heart of his enduring prominence as an artist. The magical properties of paint and his ability to conjure nuance with it – the way the light falls on a landscape and the branches of a singular baobab tree, illuminating and spotlighting our mysterious world – is at the heart of his preoccupation with painting. This has haunted, inspired, and propelled him as an artist for nearly 50 years.
While Meyer’s concerns appear to be about presenting reality, it is his preoccupation with manifesting his imagination as reality, that has won out. Many of his landscapes do not exist, however intimately we feel we know them. This is his genius. They present his and our memory of landscape, and how it feels – or might feel – to be in these places.
Photo credit: Michael Hall
Specialists in contemporary art from South Africa. Established in 1913. South African artists are part of the global conversation. We seek to make their voices heard.