Roelof Rossouw was born in 1957, and grew up in Benoni, near Johannesburg. A painter of figures, city and landscapes, street scenes, marine, architecture, parks and gardens. Works mainly in oils, in the style of the great Impressionists. Rossouw travels often and has visited Europe, The British Isles, Middle East, USA, Singapore, Australia and Canada (Painting vacations in Italy, France, Ukraine and USA.
1979 - 1981 Studied at the Johannesburg School of Art, gaining a National Diploma in Art and Design
1982 - 1990 Employed by the Medical University of Southern Africa as a graphic artist and medical illustrator.
1992 Started painting seriously on a daily basis
1988 - 2006 A total of 30 solo exhibitions at top galleries in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town, Stellenbosch, Cheltenham-UK and Montreal-Canada.
1999 Three-man exhibition at the Gatehouse Gallery, Glasgow
1991 - 2005 Numerous group exhibitions in South Africa, London,Cheltenham, Glasgow, Jersey, Galway, Armagh (N. Ireland), San Francisco and Miami.
The Sage Group; Anglo-Vaal; The Cape Grace Hotel-Cape Town; Mount Grace Hotel-Magaliesburg; The Woodburn Mann Art Collection; Rupert International; The Pretoria Art Museum and many private collections in South Africa and throughout the world.
First prize - Front Cover Competition for Eric Bolsmann's book on Pretoria
I find potential inspiration and material in everyday situations. The subject matter doesn't have to be grand of idyllic, quite the opposite. I can't help but to observe the abstract shapes and exciting contrasts created by the sunlit and shadow areas of buildings, an old factory, a boat yard, a crowded street, farmlands, etc. These are the kind of visual statements that inspire me to capture them on canvas.
The central theme of my paintings has something to do with mood, light and colour. I try and create a particular atmosphere and sense of time. By reducing unnecessary detail I focus the attention on the shapes and juxtaposition of colour.
"No work of art should be created with such finality that you need contribute nothing to it. You must recreate the work for yourself... You cannot look at a picture and find it beautiful by a merely passive act of seeing. The internal relations that make it beautiful to you have to be discovered and in some way have to be put in it by you. The artist provides a skeleton; he provides guiding lines; he provides enough to engage your interest and to touch you emotionally. But there is no picture... unless you yourself enter it and fill it out".
J Bronowski - THE VISIONARY EYE - Massachusetts MIT 1978 p.14
"It is the artists function to examine, digest and interpret our surroundings, to give us ways in which to react to them, evaluate them, and in various ways, to come to terms with them. The artist can point out beauty where there seems to be none, can intensify moods and qualities that reveal the means to see, enjoy and appreciate our conditions. The artist can help us to digest or grasp the welter of confusing forms that our increasingly built-up environment throws at us".
Donald Stoltenberg - THE ARTIST AND THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT
For many years I've been studying the works of contemporary artists such as: Everett Raymond Kinstler, a noted painter of New York; Bernard Dunstan, Ken Howard and Fred Cuming of England; Josep Sala of Barcelona and more recently Wolf Kahn of USA.
Old masters namely: Monet, Van Gogh, Sisley, Max Agostini, John Singer Sargent, Hugo Naude, Pierneef and Gregoire.