Looking beyond the “Painted Surfaces”

  • Posted: Nov 24, 2017

 A technical understanding of artworks reveals the creative processes and adds a new dimension to looking at paintings

Painted Surfaces, opening at the Iziko South African National Gallery (ISANG) on 30 November 2017, presents some well-known South African paintings in a whole new light – literally! 

Using newly-acquired technical examination methods of infrared photography, ultraviolet light, x-radiography and microscopic examination, Painted Surfaces goes beyond the paint layer to reveal insights into the painting techniques used by some of South Africa’s greatest artists.

Those represented in this exhibition include Thomas Baines, Frederick I’Ions, Freida Lock, George Pemba, Alexis Preller, Gerard Sekoto, Irma Stern and Edward Wolfe. There is a specific emphasis on the techniques of Stanley Pinker. Five of his paintings have been subjected to close examination, and the exhibition features many materials from his studio archive.

PaintedSurfaces features illustrated texts placed next to each artwork to explain new discoveries and share highlights of the technical study. These have resulted from conducted over the last three years. Each painting reveals something exciting and unique not previously seen before!

The collaborative technical study was conducted by the University of Cape Town, the University of the Western Cape and other institutions. The analysis of South African paintings is pioneering conservation and research development, using technology marrying art and science.

This journey of scientific and technical discovery, in relation to Art Collection presents a deeper understanding and appreciation of the work of these artists and how they created their paintings!

A special illustrated publication entitled Painted Surfaces: A Technical Study of Paintings from the Iziko South African National Gallery, which supports the exhibition, will be available.

A range of special educational events will be for the duration of the exhibition. Please enquire for further details. Painted Surfaces is on display from 30 November 2017 until 1 April 2018.




Issued by: Kim Lindeboom, Communications Coordinator

Iziko Museums of South Africa
Telephone: +27 (0) 21 481 3874
Cellphone: 083 356 6043                               
Website http://www.iziko.org.za                            

On behalf of: Office of the CEO, Iziko Museums of South Africa


About Iziko Museums of South Africa (Iziko)

Iziko operates 11 national museums, the Planetarium and Digital Dome, the Social History Centre and three collection‑specific libraries in Cape Town.  The museums that make up Iziko have their own history and character, presenting extensive art, social and natural history collections that reflect our diverse African heritage.  Iziko is a public entity and non-profit organisation that brings together these museums under a single governance and leadership structure.  The organisation allows *free access to all individuals on commemorative days, (*excluding the Castle of Good Hope and Planetarium). Visit our webpage at www.iziko.org.za, join our online community on Facebook (www.facebook.com/IzikoMuseums) or follow us on Twitter (@Iziko_Museums) for regular updates on events, news and new exhibitions.

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