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Heartland Recounted Presented Virtually by

 Heartland Recounted Presented Virtually by

Jane Digby: Golden Hour.


Heartland Recounted is an exclusive online group exhibition by from 1 – 31 July 2020. is an online gallery that was recently launched specialising in African Contemporary Art. It aims to facilitate the opportunity for African Contemporary Artists, making their work  discoverable and affordable, by showcasing exceptional artwork for sale on their digital platform and art exhibitions at various Tsogo Sun’s chain of Hi Hotels, as well as their own dedicated gallery in Johannesburg.

Lynette van Tonder, the curator, said: “Artistic landscapes typify vistas that have been captured through the lens of an artistic heart and processed through the thoughts of an artist. In due course these fleeting chronicles of space, time and socio-economic confines are encapsulated and represented as works of art.

“Urban development dictates continuous changes to the landscape, to such a point that dependence, stability and familiarity of landmarks become uncertain. Despite this the land will persist, keeping record of tracks and each successive layer deposited by humanity.”

Heartland Recounted represents four painters: Jane Digby, James de Knoop, Mark O’Donovan and Nico Lodos van Rensburg.

Each has carefully extracted and crafted predetermined pixels from a preferred panorama and presented them to the world.

Reincarnations of form, space and time. artistic volumes condensed in one exhibition: Heartland Recounted.


Jane Digby has been developing her own painterly language through atmospheric scapes for more than 20 years. She embraces imperfection as a catalyst to spark a conversation between artist, painting and viewer.

Jane Digby: Golden Hour.

Digby’s artworks concern matters of personal and cultural identity, family, community, nationality and a personal journey with physicality and spirituality.

Mark O’Donovan uses African wax print as a background layer for his paintings, affixing his personal interpretation of current landscapes onto these.

Mark O’Donovan: Rooi Els II.

Mark’s artworks are vibrant and spirited, slowly luring the viewer in, only to reveal purposeful neglect of detail and heavy-handed, shambolic mark making. This deliberate ambiguity is our South African history.

Mark explained: “A twig lying on the earth, a bush stripped of leaves; living emotional scars where there used to be a happy bustling community…sounds silenced by bulldozers, yet still reverberate.”

Nico Londos van Rensburg is a major influencer on the South African art scene. Amongst other accolades, he was invited by Pres. Thabo Mbeki to help visualize his African Renaissance movement and his work is contained in numerous high profile collections and museums.

Nico Londos van Rensburg: Goat Song.

Nico’s sophisticated and expressive surfaces, capture large concepts through colour, and layered gestural surfaces. Abstracted landscapes needs the eye and heart of a master, who knows exactly when to put the brush down and when the conversation with the artwork is over.

James de Knoop is an established contemporary artist steadily gaining recognition. In 2019 he won a place in the top 100, Sanlam Portrait awards.

James de Knoop: Condensation.

Besides portraiture James is masterful at creating soulful landscapes. His paintings represented in Heartland Recounted contain symbolic significance and silent unassuming beauty.

Ritualistic layering and mixing of media initiates the canvas; the surface is preened with white and clear acrylic paint, charcoal and fine marble sand into which the composition is laid. Soft focus brushwork captures emotive qualities granting permission to acknowledge these, only to be replaced by strategically placed brushstrokes of contrasting colour, forcing the eye to focus elsewhere.

De Knoop’s skill has been honed over a lifetime dedicated to perfect the mastery of oil painting.

Be sure not to miss this online group exhibition on

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Ray Maota