Solo Studios Intimate Art Encounters

COMPILED BY Gina Dionisio

The Riebeek Valley is once again hosting Solo Studios Intimate Art Encounters, a richly varied and stimulating visual arts event from 26-28 August.

Solo Studios Intimate Art Encounters is putting the spotlight on The Riebeek Valley which has become the nexus for a vibrant and growing artistic community.

From 26-28 August, local artists from the area will be opening their homes and studios to visitors. 18 selected Riebeek Valley artists will each be featured solo, giving them a chance to engage one-on-one with vistors. “That’s why we call it Intimate Art Encounters,” explains founder and organiser Klaus Piprek. “It creates a rare opportunity to spend meaningful time with emerging and mid-career artists. Astute collectors should find much of interest.”

The event officially opens at Die Kunshuis with the world premiere of Sculpting This Earth, the new documentary feature film from Cape Town’s CineSouth Studios about the work of internationally renowned Stellenbosch land artist Strijdom van der Merwe.

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Film still from Sculpting This Earth

Filmed and directed by CineSouth’s Victor van Aswegen, the 95-minute documentary follows the artist over the course of four consecutive seasons, from summer to summer, as he makes ephemeral artworks from natural materials in a wide range of striking natural settings. While Van der Merwe has made land art works on invitation in more than twenty countries, Sculpting This Earthshows him at work in local landscapes to which he has strong personal and emotional connections: in and around his home base of Stellenbosch, at Churchhaven on the Langebaan lagoon, and in the vast expanses of the Tankwa Karoo.

Sculpting This Earth is scheduled for international release later this year. “We’re thrilled to be hosting the world premiere of this important art documentary in our own community,” says Klaus. 

Besides the exciting premiere of Sculpting This Earth, here’s what you can expect to see at this year’s Solo Studios Intimate Art Encounters:


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Emma Willemse, Rescue series 2022, Digital collage on Hahnemühle

This 101-minute retrospective of the work of award-winning Riebeek Valley artist Emma Willemse has garnered international acclaim since its release end 2020, with laurels from 57 film festivals on 5 continents to date. Emma works with the powerful and universal themes of home, displacement and the traumatic experience of the forcibly displaced.

Artist Falko One

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A work of Falko One at Solo Studios 2020 (this has since been demolished)

The urban artist has created a once-off street art show for the event. After dazzling Solo Studios visitors in 2020, Falko One is back with another solo exhibition, at an unknown location which will be revealed during the course of the weekend.


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Obie Oberholzer

Acclaimed photographer Obie Oberholzer is hosting a solo exhibition, giving a presentation and launching his new book Happysadland. Eyes for Art depicts artmaking with children, and Aftermath – Making Art from War is an account of a child refugee fleeing Russian forces.

House Union Block

A collection of contemporary art, sourced directly from artist studios, curated by Mirna Wessels and Tamlin Blake.

To celebrate the best in Riebeek Valley wine and food, the Riebeek Valley Wine Co will offer wine blending sessions, while Solo Kitchens will provide ample opportunity to engage with some of the finest hosts in the valley, on Saturday, 27 August. There will be several other opportunities to taste the best in local fare.

For more information, programme highlights or to buy tickets, visit

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