The Contours of the Cape

Meet Adele van Heerden (she/her)

A born-and-bred Capetonian, Adele has a Fine Arts degree from the Ruth Prowse School of Art, a BA (History and Politics) from UNISA and an Honours in Curatorship from UCT. She brings these various fields together in her fine arts practice, something she pursues full-time since leaving a job as a gallery curator in 2018. In 2023, she was selected as one of ART.CO.ZA’s Artists to Watch and has completed residencies in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Paris, with her work filling the collections of private collectors on three continents.

A story with many layers

Visit the back of the letter W to see Adele van Heerden’s artistic interpretation. 

Adele’s unique approach to her art is driven by an artistic technique she developed herself, where the painter draws and colours images based on her own photographs, by applying them to both sides of translucent drafting film in a distinctive reverse-painting method. An avid walker, she has a personal connection with the trails of Table Mountain. With the city in the background, the foreground features pink proteas – a flower with significant symbolism of strength and resilience as it thrives in harsh climates, with the colour speaking to playfulness and joy – and a Cape Sugarbird, one of several Sugarbird species (Promeropidae) in the Cape.