16 May – 6 June 2015
Opening Saturday 16 May at 14:00
Exhibition catalogue available
Rosemarie Marriott’s second solo exhibition, skimmeryk, at GALLERY AOP introduces an innovative new body of work. Inspired by an entry in a book about the making of a rag doll, which mentioned the fact that some time in the past, live birds were put in the chest cavities of these dolls to imitate a living creature with a beating heart, she embarked on a quest to explore the visual possibilities of this startling image in a series of etchings and sculptural dolls. Prompted by a strong attachment to a rag doll made by her mother when she was a young girl, she relates the story of how a sibling beat the doll into ‘submission’, allegedly for being naughty, and breaking one of the legs in the process. Afterwards, Marriott could never look at the doll in the same way. In her current body of work she embarked on sculpting doll-like figures, often executed in animal parchment, sometimes with their heads modelled out of the dried scrotums of antelope. In one of them she happened to insert the carcass of a dead bird she had found in her garden. Marriott then X-rayed these sculpted dolls. The graphic quality of the X-rays (literally, the ‘host of ghost images’, as the title of the exhibition, skimmeryk, suggests in Afrikaans) prompted her to develop the images onto a series of polymer etchings. The rich symbolism of the dolls and their etched images provides the dynamism of her latest exhibition.
Rosemarie Marriott was born and grew up on a farm in the Kuruman district, Northern Cape, South Africa. She obtained a BA Degree from UNISA (1974) and an Advanced Diploma (Fine Arts) from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (1996).
Marriott has had numerous solo exhibitions since 1986 (the most recent, a travelling exhibition, titled relaas… (Oliewenhuis Art Museum, Bloemfontein, North West University Gallery, Potchefstroom, William Humphreys Art Gallery, Kimberley, KZNSA Gallery, Durban and UNISA Art Gallery, Pretoria, all during 2012), and has also participated in group exhibitions (the most recent ones being This Place/Displace, UJ Art Gallery, Johannesburg, 2012, Exhibition of South African Artists at Espace Cultural ‘’l’Hermine’’ in Sarzean-Bretagne, France, 2012, and the ABSA group show at the KKNK, Oudtshoorn, 2015). Her work can be found in private, public and corporate collections in South Africa (notably Pretoria Art Museum and Johannesburg Art Gallery) and abroad. She has published many catalogues about her work, and her art is discussed in academic journals such as de arte (November 2010) and Art South Africa 06(01), 2007. skimmeryk is her second solo show at GALLERY AOP.