THOMAS VAN GYLSWYK
I reflect on how, on the journey of my life, I was always curious - about everything. Constantly asking myself why I liked something or not and would always try to separate the visual elements, examining the design and colour. I recall always being very sensitive to how particular colours influenced me.
1962: Born in South Africa, I had the privilege of extended holidays along the Natal South coast. The fauna and flora there was a constant source of inspiration to create. I loved painting the dune forests with monkeys and mythical creatures.
My parents were close friends with Karin and Tedeuz Jarozynsk - a creative couple, closely affiliated with the Everard Read gallery in Johannesburg. My mother arranged for me to have art classes with them once a week. I attended these for about four years, and was certainly influenced by their art and concepts.
1982: I attended a design course in Cape Town.
1986: Feeling this required further exploration, I enrolled in the Billedskolan Design and Fine Art course in Copenhagen, Denmark. After the course I had several solo exhibitions, some including sculpture.
1998: After traveling extensively in Europe and the near East, I decided to return to SA. Whilst establishing a tribal art gallery in Cape Town, I painted whenever the chance arose.
2013: After fifteen year of running the gallery I decided it was time to finally live my dream to do my art full time.
And so the painting began, and so did the frustration of limited expression. The only solution was to throw myself into the vast sea of 3D possibility, and so the thrilling life of sculpture began to unfold. This is what now consumes my days, and all-consuming and most fulfilling.