Ella Cronjé

Ms. Ella Cronjé is a South African artist/sculptor based in the city of Cape Town. Prior to becoming a professional within the field of fine and applied Arts, she specialized in ceramic production and design for 14 consecutive years. It was during these constructive years as a full-time ceramicist that she acquired many of the distinctive process skills (as well as the technical dexterity) that now enable her to realize a miscellany of contentious sculptures. Although Ella received mentorship and guidance from several established artist friends and colleagues, she functions predominantly as a self-taught artist. Artist Statement: As a sculptor, my preferred medium is ceramic/clay. It is the medium I feel most comfortable with due to its tactile capacity to easily respond to my fluctuating emotional states and rapid thought patterns whilst creating sculptures. The original sculptures that are produced for my bronze-cast works are also executed in clay for the same reason – the tactile nature and transformative properties of the medium and the way in which it corresponds to my emotive instinct. My inspiration is an ever-expanding plethora of ideas connected to mythology, fables, psychology (Freud, Skinner, C.G. Jung et al) and philosophical writings (Michel Foucault, J. Derrida, J.F. Lyotard on Metanarratives & Anti-Capitalism, Nietzsche and others). I am greatly intrigued and influenced by the art of storytelling; especially if the story being told is unpredictable and uncensored by rational cognition and/or logical censorship. My preoccupation with transcendental states of consciousness, ‘pure Psychic automatism’, and the mutable realm of the unconscious aid me in creating my own stories in the form of metaphorical sculpture. The art of storytelling is ancient and has functioned as a psychological generator and register for thousands of years. Tales told in a state of trance tend to expose the spiritual and generally muted primitive/animal side of the human brain. My obsession with stories told in such a state confirms my natural inclination towards contemporary Surrealism and the techniques originally utilized by the proto-Surrealists to invoke tactile artworks (sculptures) of an irrational order. As an individual that finds it somewhat hard to express myself using words, it becomes essential for me to map out my own subjective register through the cultivation of honest and unmediated artworks. Through this process I hope and aim to conjure up a new original story or contemporary myth that I can share with others. It is my conviction that my art and sculptures signify my attempt to establish a personal visual language. Any
art that I create serves as a form of symbolic narrative, and so assists me in describing how I experience and observe the world around me.

Ceramic and glass ( box framed)
55 x 29 x 9cm
R 6 500