World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Strijdom van der Merwe

Article Id: WHEBN0025441713
Reproduction Date:

Title: Strijdom van der Merwe  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Driekops Eiland, United Nations Memorial Cemetery, Land art
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Strijdom van der Merwe

Strijdom van der Merwe (born 1961) is a South African land artist who uses materials he finds on site to create his artworks. His materials include sand, water, wood, rocks and stone. By shaping these elements into geometric forms he juxtaposes the contrast between artwork and environment, growth and destruction. Van Der Merwe's works are often very 'free' in the sense that he is able to respond to nature, but within the context of ' nature having a bigger impact on you, than you on nature'. A site, and the materials it offers, will reveal itself to you as the artist as you walk – be it in a forest, or along a beach, or in the Karoo. Only then will ideas and working methods start developing. It's a process of working with the natural material you find on site. Nothing is planned ahead – it's all improvised as you go along.[1]

Van Der Merwe studied art at the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, after which he studied printing in Utrecht and sculpture in Prague. He was also a full time artist at the Kent Institute of Art and Design in Canterbury, England. Van Der Merwe's work is frequently exhibited in galleries throughout South Africa. He has done commissions throughout the world, including Turkey, France, Belgium, Sweden, Japan, Italy and Australia.

Exhibitions and commissions on invitation were done in South Korea, Turkey, Belgium, France, Sweden, Lithuania, Japan, Australia, Germany, England and Italy. He held many personal exhibitions in various art galleries in the past years and his work has been bought by numerous private and public collectors.[2] He has commissioned sculptures for the following: Europo Parkos in Lithuania; Art Park in Art Sella, Borgu Falsugano in Italy; Floating Land, Brisbane, Australia. In 2002 he was the co-curator of the first Spier Outdoor Sculpture Biennale in conjunction with the Jan Marais Nature Reserve in Stellenbosch.[3]

His 2001 memorial sculpture Reconciliation at the United Nations Memorial Cemetery in Busan, South Korea was created as part of the International Sculpture Symposium.[4]

Van Der Merwe is co-founder of the first South African Land Art Biennale, entitled Site_Specific, giving artists the platform and opportunity to engage with art in the landscape. The first biennale was in Plettenberg in 2011, with the second biennale in August 2013.


  • Recipient of the Jackson Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant
  • Medal of Honor from the South African Academy of Arts and Science.
  • Nominated for the Daimler Chrysler award for sculpture in Public Spaces 2008


  1. ^ "Artist in Residence: Strijdom van der Merwe". Site_Specific. Retrieved 23 June 2014. 
  2. ^ "First Edition 2012: Strijdom van der Merwe". UNMCK. It’s LIQUID International Contest. 
  3. ^ "First Edition 2012: Strijdom van der Merwe". It’s LIQUID International Contest. 
  4. ^ "UN Sculpture Park". UNMCK. Republic of South Africa Embassy for the Republic of Korea. 

External links

  • Official Artist Website
  • Artist Bio on Artthrob
  • Artist profile on
  • South African artists on Sylt
  • Seemingly ‘impossible’ art forms: Strijdom van der Merwe’s land art in the context of the South African art market, by Jean le Clus-Theron
  • CIRCA Gallery
  • Site_Specific
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.