Ibis Gallery’s present exhibition is a holiday feast of toothsome and tempting treats. The central fare of this elected spread are four pieces by Raymond Andrews. These Prelleresque works with their intriguing mix of imagination and artistry have an unabashed SA-60s-retro feel about them. Debby Scrivens’s pencil drawings of birds are austerely and simply put, especially those where only a hint of colour is used. Flipside to Debby’s fragile birds are two watercolours by Pierre de Wet. Pierre’s fresh compositions with their winning motive foreshortening are immediately engaging. Following this lighter course are the charged and appealing canvasses of Jaco Coetzee who remains a favourite at Ibis.
Providing gravity is Montagu’s own Francois Krige (1913-1994) and Dutch genre painter Bernadus Blommer (1845-1914). These small quiet masterworks could reassure forevermore tucked in close to a bedside or a favourite easy chair.
To all this is asserted the work of gallery owners Carolyn Metcalfe and Hennie Kok. Hennie’s fine woodwork provides furniture that is bespoke and contemporary. Carolyn’s sublime staple of pottery remains constant. But it is her artwork: Her portrait oils and her exquisite nude drawings which illuminate the gallery and her talent.
Pair to artwork and furniture the essential of carpets: Bismillah has stocked Ibis in a fine selection of splendid oriental carpets at reasonable prices. These are the images of the loom; the welcoming rugs and the appreciation of the naked foot.
If this is all too rich there is less: The charming arrangements of artist Trudy Brain’s tiny painted birds perched in small branches; redolent camphor-lined boxes made by Hennie; Carolyn’s hand stitched Shwe Shwe pouches and sister Felicity’s warm and fancy socks, join together to pile on the berries at Ibis’s regaling table.