Jaco du Plessis
In a world of colour, I dream in lines of black and white.
As an artist, I have always been fascinated with the world in two shades – black and white. This fascination led me to fall in love with printmaking and in particular – linocuts. The medium allows me to play with a high contrast of light and dark to create images that even though they are devoid of colour, are still complex.
My work in theme also plays with this contrast that the two tones create, and lately, there has been a strong focus on duality. Good versus evil, light and dark, but not just as opposites as one might generally think of them, but in the sense that life is made up of different parts of each of these dualities and how they are intricately woven into our lives to make them richer. The intricacies of these dualities translate into my technique as my work is often carved finely with short detailed carves.
White becomes the great balancer in my work as the negative space surrounding the subject matter creates more than just a picture plain, unnerving the artwork with stress or balancing out the tension in the subject matter. My work predominantly focuses on the male and often how they fit into society, how we think, and how we perceive the male. The male then also relates to the duality in my work as we are often seen as the strong and yet in the quiet spaces we can break down and be vulnerable.
In today’s age where we question more of the world we live in I want my work to envoke questions of duality and how it’s not always as simple as black and white.
Born in 1981 in Witbank, I completed a National Higher Diploma from The Open Window in Pretoria in 2003 where I was awarded the Top Visual Arts Student with a focus in printmaking. It is here that I studied under printmakers Diane Victor and Christiaan Diedericks that remain great inspirations to this day.
In 2018 I won the Rosendal Art Miniature Print competition and in 2020 I participated in the Rust-en-Vrede gallery’s all-male Boys don’t cry Exhibition. In May 2021 I was named as a finalist in the Prisma Art Prize, an international art competition.
Web site: https://www.instagram.com/thegreyprinter/