Joy, playfulness, inner-strength… A CHER canvas carries a powerful emotive message. Her instinctual colour usage and honed brushstrokes morph beyond what is purely visual, to create artworks nuanced with life and humanity.
After having her first sell-out exhibition in 1992 while in her teens, Cher has passionately studied and practiced her art to become a voice on the contemporary art scene. Her instinctual sense for beauty is capturing hearts throughout the world, coupled with canvases that dialogue with each viewer to create very personal moments that change and refresh with light and mood.
It’s little wonder Cher van Shouwen was named Artist of the Year in 2002 by Fairlady Magazine in her homeland of South Africa, plus featured on television art shows. She has also caught the attention of the global art scene and secured invitations to exhibit in solo shows in London, South Africa, the United States and Australia.
Today, her works hang in resorts, restaurant and homes throughout South Africa, France, Germany, Switzerland, the US and UK, Belgium and Australia. Further, she has been collected by some of South Africa’s top arts aficionados, as well as selling one work to the Duke of Edinburgh.
In 2007, CHER moved to Perth, Australia, with her family – husband Adrian and children Taigh and Emma Rose. She has a busy painting schedule for commissions and exhibitions, plus teaches boutique classes for men, women and children at her home studio in Mosman Park, Perth.
While CHER studied under world-renowned South African artist Vernon Swart for three years at the PJ Olivier School of Art, she shared a passion for life and interiors. After studying journalism at Rhodes University, she completed a degree in Interior Design at The White House School of Interiors in Cape Town. This has fuelled her desire to create individuality and beauty in the home.
?Cher works from photographs that she loves – hers and those of accredited others . She prepares her canvases with sand and colour. She then uses a combination of primary colours – red, blue and yellow – with fundamental black and white to create sheer spontaneous magic.
The motion and depth she achieves with this is remarkable. The viewer is struck by a sensitivity and character, which adds life to the space and canvas it fills. Each work is then personalised with a poem or her thoughts charcoaled on the back or in paint across the canvas, with the final “flick-a-compli” - a final flick of colour, adding a sense of celebration and balance.
A married woman amasses beaded necklaces as she grows older. Turkana people (of Kenya) are able to read a women's exact status, by observing her beaded jewellery.
Painting inspired by Kenyan/Australian photographer Louisa Setan, 2007