This is a painting I did for Roland Reid, the marketing manager at Land Rover and one of the nicest people I know. It was a gift to celebrate the launch of the Pulse of the City campaign and my good fortune to be involved with it.
The car you see in the painting is the new Range Rover Evoque; I used bright pink because as luck would have it, that is the colour of the Johannesburg leg of the campaign. In the background are references to famous icons on the city skyline, including the Hillbrow Tower, the cooling towers in Soweto and Sandton City. In the centre of the painting, you can see lines that represent roads. All of the words inscribed on the painting are names of Johannesburg streets. In the middle is Vilakazi Street, famous for being home to two Nobel Peace Prize winners – Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela.
Behind the skyline is one of Joburg’s famous summer thunderstorms, which brings a sense of moodiness to the composition. My intention was to convey the energy of the city, which is the point, after all, of the campaign.
It’s an important painting for me because it represents the first time, besides smaller illustrations, that I have worked with mixed media. The car and buildings were drawn in permanent marker, the lipstick applied on top, and then written into using a fineliner. The layering I am aiming to achieve is a form of palimpsest, a concept I first learned about in Std 6 art class, when I was 13.