Hetta Pieterse Profile of Hetta Hetta Pieterse

Hetta Pieterse

Hetta Pieterse works full-time at Unisa Press as head of the Graphic Design Unit. During recent years, she has regularly exhibited mainly in the Pretoria environment with printmaking groups; often with the Tate Modern Studio, under the guidance of master printmaker Mimi van der Merwe.

The Tait Modern Studio was established in 1984. Mimi studied etching at the Académie Royale in Brussels, and at the École Supérieure des Beaux Arts in Paris under Jean E Bersier.

Hetta experiments continuously with the printmaking medium and new media, and enjoys the three-dimensionality of paper. She prefers to do small editions of prints and once-off prints, where chine collé elements are added on to the prints just before the printing process. Playing and interacting with papers, the mark-making process and with the technical boundaries of the traditional printmaking techniques are central to many of the works.

Hetta explores aspects of map-making; drawing parallels between one-dimensional marks and imagery taken from maps and the three-dimensional world (landscape, and increasingly also fragments of the human body). This has led to a personalised image-making style, characterised by colour application in single flat planes (via chine collé), and by finely detailed linear works.

The resultant images often have a fragile, ephemeral quality combined with an attempt to preserve the direct energy of the art-making process - despite the use of an indirect art-making method . The print-making method acts as a gateway (and not a technical stumbling block) for enabling the creative process, so that the medium itself retains a strong voice in the final art work. Materials used range from traditional copper to perspex or plastic blocks which cannot allow for the printing of large editions. Often drawings are made directly on to blocks, where the first spontaneous set of lines are retained (and cannot be deleted) to form the core of the new set of images.

In June-July 2006, Hetta exhibited works on paper at the Grahamstown Arts Festival; at the Johan Carinus Art Centre, with veteran printmaker Mimi van der Merwe and Carinus sculpture lecturer Graeme Germond.

During June to August 2005, Hetta exhibited 22 printmaking works in Pretoria, at the Voortrekker Monument; together with digital photographic print artist Coert Wiechers.

In August to September 2004, Hetta Pieterse worked and exhibited new works at the Cité Internationale Des Arts in Paris, France.

She has also exhibited in Riberac, South-Western France, and had a solo exhibition in Port Louis, Mauritius.


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