Juanita Oosthuizen is a contemporary artist and designer based in Cape Town, South Africa.
Her work is centered around her love for intricate, delicate minimalism.
Her inspiration is coming up with creative ways to incorporate miniature figurines into works of art – placing them in a carefully planned scenario, fashioned from board and paper. These are then mounted in a box frame to create a 3D environment.
Juanita works mostly in black, white and grey, sometimes introducing a dash of colour into her works to create an element of surprise.
I work mainly in shades of grey, black and white, with a few works featuring a pop of red.
As a fan of minimalism, my work often features small people made in a silicone mould and placed in a carefully planned scenario, fashioned from board and paper.
I create a space for the spectator to make his or her own interpretation.
“Years ago at the Tate Modern Gallery in London, I came across a tiny painting in a huge hall with a little silhouette as the subject sweeping an enormous amount of snow. It made such an impression on me; I think it triggered my passion for this style,” - this was Juanita’s shape-shifting moment.
Juanita grew up in South Africa’s Cape platteland. From an early age she experimented creatively with paper, cloth and plastic – questioning, directing, observing – never settling for that which she found aesthetically displeasing.
In the 1990s she joined a corporate gifts company and was responsible for their packaging design. In 1998 she ventured on to start her own company – Pepper Plum Designs – manufacturing and designing stationery and various household items for the corporate and retail markets, using mainly PVC and sheet polypropylene as input materials.
“I create a space for the spectator to make his or her own interpretation.” This indeed is true, with each work depicting our place in the surrounding world. Human figures interact with one another.
Her attention to detail is fascinating. A face, the size of a pin head, conveys as much an expression as if one is to look into a mirror. The sense of scale is indeed impressive with each handmade frame adding perspective.
Juanita’s minimalist works of art capture time and its experience, ultimately portraying any or all of us.