Eddie Botha Review
Eddie’s dad was an artist.
Eddie began creating at the age of three.
His drawings were used in the school paper when he was six years old.
His last name is Botha.
Teasing the Taught opened at Arthive on the 24th of June. The exhibition has been extended and is showing for an entire month. It is a must see show.
As well as creating visual masterpieces, the multi skilled South African can build cool stuff, take pretty photographs, design innovative spaces, care for plants and construct extra partition/gallery walls made entirely out of pieces of trashy timber. Which is exactly what he managed for Teasing the Taught. And fill the entire space, he did!
The amount of work in Arthive right now is astounding. When I queried Eddie on how long this work took him to create I almost burst out laughing in disbelief when he casually replied with, “Umm, under a month.” (My status as a sloth artist just increased ten fold.)
On close inspection, I realised each work is actually documented with the exact date and time Eddie created it; another one of his many quirks. Eddie enjoys making subtle social comments on the pricing, commercialisation and marketing of an artwork by putting absurd prices on his creations, such as 99c and $89,999.99. Or buy one for $59.99, or buy two for $58.99.
Eddie’s work is symbolic. He wants people to look to nature and loved ones rather than technology and money. Eddie deals lightly with heavy issues. He finds the humour in hateful and the silly in sombre. Issues such as war, politics, cultural diversity, religion, sexuality and relationships are expressed visually with a five-armed, wide-eyed fictional robot flailing himself towards you, while an overweight Caucasian woman with huge breasts suns herself like a lizard on a beach. All the while, Eddie’s perspectives are causing you to continue examining the work until you finally figure it out…there are three different perspectives within the one picture! Whoa, what a visual feast these little beauties are.
Eddie’s wife, Jennifer is a huge positive influence in his life. The two of them work together: travelling, photographing, marketing, observing and creating.
Eddie’s motivation is truly inspiring. His work is unique, humorous, intriguing and conceptually relevant. After Teasing the Taught, my admiration for Eddie’s work doubled. These strange figurative landscapes have left a some-what addictive need to see more and more.
Written by Emily Mitchell.
Photo by Jennifer Botha.