About Chonat Getz | Art.co.za | Art in South Africa
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About The Artist

Chonat Gets

Artist Statement

For many years I taught Mathematics at Wits University.

After retiring from lecturing I studied art at UNISA and also attended several glass courses, both locally and in England, given by international glass artists.

I began my career as an artist by working in the Blue Door Studio under Collin Cole learning various printmaking methods. At the same time, I perfected my techniques with glass sculpture and metal sculpture.

Bronze and glass are my predominant media. At once a solid and a liquid, both brittle and malleable, there is a glorious elemental contradiction in glass. Like pi, an irrational number, it is both complex yet commonplace. The process in which glass sculpture is moulded into existence is distinctly scientific in nature. Altering any one of the constituent parts of the basic compound can significantly enhance or diminish the quality and clarity of the glass - as can adjustments in temperature during the firing process. Working with glass is inherently experimental, particularly the process of glass casting. Although the glass is encased in a rigid mould, the hot liquid has a freedom of movement that can lead to unexpected results.

Bronze, like glass, is both a solid and a liquid, but, unlike glass, not brittle at all. So the big advantage here is that it’s virtually unbreakable and bronze sculptures can be placed outdoors as well as indoors. Also, bronze has an intrinsic classical appeal. Bronze statues were regarded as the highest form of sculpture in Ancient Greek Art.

Bronze sculpture, known for its longevity, continues into modern times as one of the materials of choice for monumental statuary.

Conceptually my interests are multiple and, as a result, my art has been diverse. I have been drawn to mathematical objects, such as the platonic solids, the Mobius strip and the conic forms. But I also like to depict moving vehicles, skulls, animals and torsos!

But most of all, I return again and again to horses!

My inspiration and influences are widespread – the exquisite Greek friezes of the Parthenon, the genius of Leonardo, Durer and Rembrandt, the geometric horses of Ucello, the terror and ecstasy of Gericault and Delacroix, the realism of Stubbs and, in modern times, the works of Marino Marini, Salvador Dali and Elisabeth Frink to mention just a few.

Also it’s interesting that there are so many famous horses that we are all familiar with such as Pegasus, Black Beauty, Sea Biscuit, Bucephalus, Silver, Incitatus, Rocinante, Marengo, Hippocampus, The Trojan Horse, The White horse of Kent, the Houyhnhnms, The Horse With No Name...

Finally, the aesthetic pleasure derived from the elegant grace, powerful form and dynamic spirit of a beautiful horse is not dissimilar to the aesthetic pleasure derived from the elegance, power and depth of a fine mathematical argument.


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