The Long View introduces oil painting interpretations of various South African landscapes by Capetonian artists Rentia Retief and Larita Engelbrecht. The duo share a passion for time spent on mountain trails. At the start of the pandemic lockdown, Larita’s frustration at not being able to visit the Western Cape mountains inspired her series of backward-looking natural scenes derived from vintage photography books. Rentia’s landscapes are observed from her own photographs taken while trail running on farms and mountain ranges throughout South Africa.
Through a shared subject matter and medium, the works on show speak to the enduring tradition of landscape painting. The sequence of repeating horizons provides a sightline to tranquillity during a period of uncertainty, restriction and confinement. The panoramic perspective, bringing together the immediacy of experience with subtle historical shifts in the landscape, prompts a long view of the natural world, and the personal and environmental effects of our relationship with it.