Excerpt from introduction to Visual Cultures and Critical Theories long essay, 2020
“This work aims to contribute to the understanding of an artificial reality presented to us under the canopy of trees. The psychology of a people that have not received truth and reconciliation as a nation.
The Acorn now this Oak, as metaphors for colonisation, as we recognise the growth of an acorn into a full-grown oak. Vegetation travels with people and therefore they are conscious. I hope to uncover the psychological effect this all has on a people that have been guided by the hands of colonisers that brought trees for their own benefits.
In my 25 years of observation with my camera capturing light and darkness by freezing time, into memory. Unpacking the use of this western tool, how I am a slave to it and it as the master to my desires. I question this oak that lives down the road from me in the city of Johannesburg. In the same way, I question my existence in South Africa now having lived half my life in the old and half in the new South Africa.
To the greater part of my knowledge, it’s been the journey of seeking an understanding of where and why I am. The understanding of existence in a postcolonial post-apartheid South Africa. This understanding of time in the present with a lived past of past and present South Africa. The turn of our democracy 1994 this was a period of immense hope and total nation pride.
In my equalised existence of half and half being, post and pre apartheid a lived laboured life with nothing to show in the production on memory and time called photography.
In the unpacking of understanding where certain trees are from, and who brought them and why. These would be the questions that would guide my research, as I try to understand the use of trees now in the city of Johannesburg. In the same breath to unpack a visual description as I paint with light and darkness, with a western tool, that has been on my side for more than 25 years.”