Marian Hester | ARTIST PORTFOLIO
ARTIST STATEMENT AND BIOGRAPHY
My work explores the pressures placed on the planetary ecology from what is being called the Anthropocene era – the measurable human impact on the natural world. My series of small “landscape bronzes” invites the viewer to examine broken and damaged branches, twigs and uprooted trees close-up and intimately, allowing the viewer to see the detail and beauty that waits to be found even in broken things. The works explore the idea that something apparently valueless is transformed into an item of value when it is remade in a different material – in this case, bronze.
Marian Hester is an artist based in Johannesburg, South Africa. After an 18-year career as a lawyer and investment banking executive, Marian changed direction in 2014 to focus on her art practice, completing her fine art honours degree through the University of South Africa (Unisa) in 2018.
Marian’s current project deals in various ways with landscape and the increasing concerns being expressed worldwide about the effect of the Anthropocene era on nature and ecological systems. Her site-specific installation, entitled The Weight of the Dead (2017-2018), uses pieces of dry tree roots and trunks, lit so that the shadows are integral to the work, presented together with a meditative sound installation, to communicate some of these concerns. A recent 2019 installation comprises a cloud of tiny suspended coffins for bees, made from Fabriano papier mâché, also accompanied by a sound work referencing the sky. Other than installation, she also works in bronze sculpture, painting and printmaking.