2021 Artist entry

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Fanie Buys


“Grimering”, the Afrikaans word for make up, has a strangely grating sound: something soft and pliant raked across one’s larynx. This body of work is inspired and drawn from soft porn made for magazines like “Loslyf” and “Scope” in the 80s and 90s. Pictures of women contorted to present pleasure: teased, tanned, and lacquered in to the same colours and shapes. “Grimering” is a meditation on the mildewed images that shaped the sexuality of many men my age: the last great heists on secret places with forbidden books. Like makeup these images are used to hide, but also to keep the reality of a cruel industry hidden.

I’ve made these works on paper and used a process of chemical treatment and pressure to give the impression of an oil painting as a flat and shiny print (ironically this is usually the other way around). The works show women chosen to emulate my memories of the magazines I have discussed above. The women seemed to me, a young gay man, incredibly glamorous and powerful: able to rapturously seduce the men I so badly wanted to pay attention to me. The paintings, viscous layers of shellac, are bouquets of memories and contradictions.


Fanie Buys was born in Gansbaai in 1993 to a British mother and Afrikaans father. After spending several years explaining that he doesn’t actually speak Afrikaans that well, he completed his secondary schooling in George, and went on to do a Bachelor of Fine Arts at Michaelis. Graduating in 2016 with a distinction in studiowork and the co-recipient of both the Simon Gerson Award for an original body of work and the Judy Steinberg Award for painting, Buys completed a Post Graduate Certificate of Education. He has been teaching as well as pursuing his painting practice since. Buys has exhibited nationally and abroad, and his work has been featured in VISI, House and Leisure, Artthrob, and the Art Times – he has also been a finalist in the Sanlam National Portrait Award and Fynarts Tondo Prize shows. Buys has mounted three solo exhibitions to date, the most recent being Miss at 99 Loop Gallery in Cape Town, where he lives and practices.

Web site: http://www.faniebuys.com


Artist: Fanie Buys
Title: Olivia, 2021
Medium: Oil on Fabriano
Size: H:250 W:200 D:
Edition:0 Price:R4800
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