Artists We Love: Adriaan Diedericks

PHOTOS Dook PRODUCTION Annemarie Meintjes WORDS Debbie Loots

Talented young visual artist Adriaan Diedericks has been impressing people here and abroad with his sculptures.

After a chance meeting with local artist Adriaan Diedericks, VISI deputy editor Annemarie Meintjes was captivated. And with good reason: This 24-year-old Stellenbosch University art graduate is one to watch. He tells us more about himself and his work.

Why art?

Growing up in rural Piketberg, I loved playing with wood and stones, which I think cultivated my interest in three-dimensional forms. During my first year as a graphic design student I decided to change to fine art, and I haven’t looked back.

What did you do after graduating?

I started an apprenticeship under Lionel Smit in 2013 and took part in group exhibitions. This year, I went solo.

Who inspires you?

I have always been fascinated by the old masters who were able to work realistically, such as Rodin and Michelangelo. They inspire me to push my boundaries.

What are your greatest accomplishments to date?

I am especially proud that my first work at university – a 2,2m-tall plastic-and-steel horse – became a public sculpture in Jan Marais Park in Stellenbosch. I am also proud of the fact that in 2014 I was invited to participate in Art Cologne in Germany, the second-largest art fair in the world.

What makes your work special?

It’s honest and raw; it relies on itself to hold ground rather than a deeper concept. I work in wood and bronze and subvert the medium, toying with the viewer’s perception.