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Liza Grobler: Life in full colour

The big reveal of Liza Grobler’s 102 square metre installation of yellow rope intricately woven into the atrium of the South African National Gallery in Cape Town happens this week when the ‘Women’s Work’ exhibition opens this coming First Thursday.

It’s called ‘No More Worlds To Conquer’ and that’s all we’re able to say for now, but to give you an idea of the type of work you can expect, we zoom in on the before and after of her most recent magical installation Barbed Wire Paradise.

Barbed Wire Paradise a spatial drawing and event by Liza Grobler was held at her new Woodstock studio in September 2016. The immersive drawing was constructed from 40 000 pipe cleaners and other odds and ends, and was open to the public for a mere two hours. An adaptation of the installation has also been selected for the Cape Town Art Fair 2017. Find out more about the meaning and process of the work below.

Before: The making of Barbed Wire Paradise

We caught up with Liza Grobler in her studio facing up to a pile of 40 000 pipe cleaners and realizing a dream against a big deadline. Find out what she had to say about her creative process.

After: A glimpse of the surreal beauty of Barbed Wire Paradise

Barbed Wire Paradise came and went in a flash, to the surreal soundtrack of a saxophonist perched in the rafters. Luckily it was captured through the lens of a looking glass. Take a tumble into Liza’s life in wonderland.

Next: No More Worlds To Conquer comes to life on 1 December


‘No More Worlds To Conquer’ is part of ‘Women’s Work’, the gallery’s summer exhibition curated by Ernestine White, which honours South African artists and designers, both female and male, that use craft and thread in their work.

It’s one thing to draw a concept sketch (pictured above) but it’s another thing to plait, weave and crochet 300kgs of yellow rope into an interactive wonderworld. We say no more. Except one thing. If you have any big dreams floating about, you’ll find a place to anchor them in the wishing well that lies at its creative centre.

Nando’s sponsored the production of this No More Worlds To Conquer created in the courtyard of the South African National Gallery in Cape Town, as part of the ‘Women’s Work’ exhibition.

From her early years as an emerging artist, Grobler has participated in a range of artist- enabling programmes in which Nando’s plays a patron role. Examples include Nando’s Chicken Run, Half Square and Qubeka Bead Studio. 

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