Trophy (Angora Ram)


Woven glass seed beads and enamel on board

Image size: 37 x 42cm

Framed size: 41 x 46 x 1cm

Artist's statement:

As an art medium beads symbolize the historic links between Europe and Africa, relationships between black and white and for the artist, a process of re-assessing and analyzing one's cultural and spiritual belonging as a South African.

The trophy animals represented here are African symbols of life and wealth. They represent a pastoral way of living and when juxtaposed with urban landscapes comment on the transmigration of people from rural to more urban settings and how they take their value systems and their symbols of wealth and culture with them.


Tamlin completed a BA in Fine Art at the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, in 1995. She specialised in sculpture and finished top of her class. Following this she decided to develop her skills as a painter to combine her love of art and nature in botanical art. This culminated in a Masters in Fine Art degree.

While living in Ireland (2001 - 2002) Tamlin was accepted as a member of the Water Colour Society of Ireland and her work resides in their permanent collection at the University of Limerick. Examples of Tamlin's botanical artwork can also be found in the collections of the University of Stellenbosch Botany Department, Kirstenbosch Botanic Gardens and the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation USA.

Tamlin's recent work shows a return to more sculptural concepts and consists of painstakingly woven bead images. In 2003 she received a merit award at the Brett Kebble Art Awards and recently she exhibited a collection of portraits and stamps at her successful solo show Change of Address at the AVA, Cape Town. Tamlin's work can be found in the Spier Collection, the collection of the Bead Merchants of Africa and various private collections.

Currently working on private commissions Tamlin also holds the possition of studio manager at Qalo, a project of the art consultancy Coeo based in Cape Town, where artists are invited to collaborate with a team of beaders to create beaded artworks.

Solo Exhibitions:

1999   Botanical Art by Tamlin Blake - Stellenbosch Botanical Gardens, Cape Town
2001   Exploring Cremnophytes - Bang the Gallery, Cape Town
2004   Change of Address - AVA, Cape Town
1995    Absolute Artistic License - Absolute Vodka competition: First Prize, National Gallery, Cape Town
1996   Volkskas Atelier - National Exhibition, Johannesburg
2000   Inaugural Kirstenbosch Exhibition of Botanical Art - Bronze medal, Cape Town
2001   Botanical Art - Everard Read Gallery, Johannesburg
2002   Royal Horticultural Society Botanical Art Show - Silver-Gilt medal, RHS, London
2002   Red Dot Artists - Bartley Dray gallery, Chelsea, London
2002   Water Colour Society of Ireland Annual Exhibition - Dun Laoighaire, Ireland
2002   Kirstenbosch Biennale - Silver medal, Cape Town
2002   Fruits of Desire - Joint exhibition, Metatron Art Gallery, Co. Wicklow, Ireland
2003   Water Colour Society Annual Exhibition - Dun Laoighaire, Ireland
2003   Island Botanical Art - Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Tasmania, Australia
2003   Brett Kebble Art Awards - Merit Award, CTICC, Cape Town
2004   Assemblage - Battersea Affordable Art Fair, London
2004   Doring Dolies - AVA, Cape Town

Forthcoming Exhibitions:

2005   11th International Exhibition of Botanical Art and Illustration - Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, USA. (24 Oct 2004 - 29 Feb 2005)

2005   Finding You - Collaborative ceramics exhibition, AVA, Cape Town (April 2005)

2005 All rights reserved. Origination by Di Conradie.