'le monde flottant'
11 July - 1 August
We are pleased to announce the publication of a new suite of prints by Fiona Pole which she will be exhibiting at GALLERY AOP under the title, ‘le monde flottant’. Primarily a printmaker, she has managed, over a number of years, to capture the attention of the art world with her very personal, yet universal subject-matter and her subtly unconventional approach to the printmaking medium. Simplified forms are presented in often complex spatial relationships that are echoed in the seeming ease with which she applies a variety of traditional printmaking techniques.
Pole references the world of Japanese art, the floating world, to which it is often likened, and in particular, its famous printmakers, such as Kawanabe Kyōsai, a pupil of the famous Katsushika Hokusai. One of Pole’s iconic works on her latest exhibition references Kyōsai’s famous woodcut, Crow on a snowy plumb branch, c 1880. Kyōsai, known as a fiercely individualist and independent Japanese printmaker, worked during both the Edo and Meiji periods which saw Japan evolving from a feudal to a modern state. Kyōsai was known for his exuberance, which also extended to his technologically excellent draughtsmanship.
The same can be said of Pole’s approach to printmaking.
It is said that Kyōsai’s first aesthetic shock was at the age of nine when he picked up a human head that was severed from its body in the Kanda river. Perhaps this explains Pole’s penchant for the isolated image of the picture plane of the paper. She is known for the solitary image that is beautifully executed in minute detail through an intricate network of printmaking techniques.
Fiona Pole was born in 1974 in Benoni, South Africa. She studied at Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa, where she obtained a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Honours) degree in 1996. In 2002 she graduated from L’École Superieure Estienne, Paris, France with a mention of excellence. She specializes in printmaking and has had a number of exhibitions in South Africa and abroad. Having lived in Paris for over ten years, she and her family have returned to South Africa. She lives and works in Johannesburg.