Hlungwani’s exhibition of large etchings and charcoal drawings, entitled A strong woman never gives up and presented in association with the Knysna Fine Arts Gallery, was opened by the gallery’s curator and manager, Corlie de Kock. She outlined the importance of etching and print making in South African art history, referring in particular to the early Rorke’s Drift artists. “What most people don’t realise,” she said, “is what a fiendishly difficult technique it is. To produce etchings of the size and complexity of Phillemon’s work, is almost unheard of.”

FynArts Festival Artist, Phillemon Hlungwani and his wife, Wisani

She went on to comment that apart from being one of the nicest, hardest-working and least pretentious artists to deal with, Phillemon the artist, is completely inseparable from the work he produces. “He lives his work and he knows the people and places he portrays so well that he is arguably better than any artist at depicting rural life in South Africa today.” Phillemon and his wife, Wisani were present at the opening and on Sunday morning Phillemon conducted a ‘walkabout’ of his exhibition.

The announcement of the winners of the 2019 Tollman Bouchard Finlayson Art Award has been a highlight of the annual Hermanus FynArts Festival. The Tollman family and Peter Finlayson have long been great supporters of the arts in South Africa and sponsored this national competition for the sixth consecutive year, with a first prize of R20 000, second prize of R10 000, and two merit prizes of R5 000 each. Neeske Alexander walked away with the 1st prize, followed by Karen Grove in 2nd place and Natasha Brown and Terrence Howahowa each receiving a Merit prize. A total of 53 works were selected as finalists from the 227 works submitted.

There was great excitement when Terrence was awarded a merit prize for his tapestry and weaving piece. Terrence and three of the other finalists are residents of Zwelihle who form part of the Living Tapestry Project. All the winning works are mounted on barrel heads and are currently on display in the Bouchard Finlayson cellar.

The contemporary ceramics exhibition, featuring the works of 32 ceramicists, is on display at the Windsor Hotel for the duration of the festival. Further art exhibitions can be viewed at local galleries in town.

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