Gabrielle Raaff

  • Thrown I, Ink and Water-based oil on canvas, 2015, 130x80cm
  • Thrown II, Ink and Water-based oil on canvas, 130cmx80cm, 2015
  • The Pessimist, Water-based oil on plyboard, 35x35cm, 2015

Gabrielle Raaff is a painter who lives and works in Cape Town, South Africa.

“Gabrielle Raaff's works begin with a photographic image. And while this image serves as a jumping-off point only, it seems that we are repeatedly brought back to the photographic process. It's as if the medium of photography, and its ability to fix an image is what piques her interest. “

Raaff works with ethereality. She uses the media of ink, watercolour and water based oil as a vehicle for alluding to the form, the function and the emotion of her subject. Landscape and its reference both to actual place and places of the subconscious are what can be found lurking in her paintings.

The artist’s most notable earlier works in watercolour and ink capturing beach and city figures and aerial Google satellite images of distinctly different South African neighbourhoods, rely on a cool relationship between herself and the subject and revel in the abstract qualities of the view.
Recent works have seen a return to a more visceral use of water-based oil to help play out a more intimate painterly relationship with the subject.

“Such viscous media, and its sensitive handling, lend themselves to this murky terrain where images arise and dissolve more than they fix, where the picture plane repeatedly asserts itself against the pull of illusionism, and where the ground is always unsteady.”

Quotes by Paul Edmunds

She is currently working towards her first solo show at SMITH which opens towards the end of February 2017.