Francois's approach to graphic art typically involves the developing of visual concepts in the form of a series of works. Recent series include Of Heart & Home (2013), Urban Jungle (2013 – 2014), and Terra Nullius (2014 – 2015). Of Heart & Home serves as reference to his return to South Africa after having spent four years working and traveling in Asia. In these works visual elements of African and other international visual cultures are combined to create a single collective visual unit. Urban Jungle continues in the previous series’ style, but departs from it in the sense that each work explores individual concepts regarding the link between space, thought and memory. These works collectively serve as semi-autobiographical reflective narratives. In Terra Nullius, literally “land belonging to no-one”, visual cues of urban architecture and informal structures are often superimposed. These works require from its viewers to reconsider, re-evaluate and rethink the prevailing status quo notions on differentiation within the populace, not merely by outlining the inherent politics, but by reviewing the spaces where different aspects of one's individual life unfold as supposed to those of one's immediate “others” – it aims to shift the focus from emphasizing our differences to identifying that which makes us similar, even within our differences.
Francois Pretorius is a graphic artist who predominantly works with Indian ink and felt-tip pens fusing various international (so-called) ethnic visual languages. These works serve as semi-autobiographical narratives with recurring themes of urban life as liminal space, the championing of intercultural connectivity and most of all, hope and faith in the human spirit to prevail amidst adversity. Currently he is the manager of the Creativity Centre at the North-West University (NWU) and, as of 2015, also a part-time Art History lecturer and PhD candidate at the NWU who further serves as an active member of the NWU Research Niche: Visual Narratives and Creative Outputs through interdisciplinary and practice-led research.
TERTIARY EDUCATION: HIGHEST QUALIFICATION 2015 MA Art History North-West University (NWU) Potchefstroom, South Africa
INTERNATIONAL ART PUBLICATIONS: 2014 Starved Magazine (USA) “There is no them, there is no other; there is only us” Interview with Francois Pretorius (8 September 2014) http://bit.ly/1xUN2kF
RECENT EXHIBITIONS: “ABCs of Life” with Gordon Froud 1932 Long Street Art Lovers Gallery Pretoria, South Africa 22 January - 11 February 2015 ArtCloud#5 Contemporary Visions Arts Festival Florence, Italy 8-30 November 2014 Arts Quarter Klein Karoo National Arts Festival Oudtshoorn, South Africa 29 March - 5 April 2014.