Biography of South African Artist Grady Zeeman
Art has always been my passion! My fondest early memories involve my Dad showing me how to draw. He did excellent technical drawings of vintage cars, engines and aeroplanes. So, as a child that was what I learned to do as well. This helped me tremendously with learning perspective and the mechanics behind what I see.
When I was 14 years old, I badly wanted to attend art classes, but my mother was dead-set against it. She felt that between my academics and sport, in which I both excelled, I had enough on my plate.
At 17 I decided to apply at the Cape Technicon to study Fashion Design. My grandfather was furious for he wanted me to study Political Science or Medicine, but I was adamant in following my passion. Art at school level was compulsory upon application, however the Technicon overlooked it and gave me the opportunity.
I was a designer in a clothing factory in Cape Town before I moved back to my hometown, Swellendam, to marry a local farmer. I continued selling my drawings for an extra income and attended a couple of classes to develop my skills in oil painting as well.
However, between raising my 2 children and helping my husband on the farm, my art took a bit of a backseat. In 2005 I saw my way clear to pick up my art again. This time a lot more serious. Two of my friends and I did the roof of a local restaurant and had a small exhibition space there as well. I continued to develop my techniques and broadened my knowledge on art history. In 2008 I had my first international exhibition and my career went from strength to strength.
I was the owner of Kunstehuijs Art Gallery from 2011 to 2017, where I not only exhibit my own work, but also some of South Africa’s prominent artists as well.
National Diploma Clothing Design, Cape Technicon – 1986-1988
Diploma in Art Appreciation, The Art Institute – 2015
Navigating Today’s Art World: From Studios to Art Fairs, Sotheby’s Institute of Art – 2018