Francois Koch

Francois Koch Born 3 May 1944 paints 'The Great Outdoors'- the topography of the panoramas of the karoo and
bushveld. Landscape has always been the central theme of South African.

It is rooted in the pioneering impulse of the early settlers driven in search of freedom from the politcal and religious strife in Europe to seek new land to settle. The adventures and persistent hardships of that journey live on in stories told around the campfires today. A trip into the wilderness is part of the universal mythos of a rite of passage into manhood and responsibility. This is Francois Koch's heritage and in his paintings he unselfconsciously shares his point of view, he is close to the land he loves and knows the identity of each plant and animal. Through his eyes we watch sheep huddling together as they traverse a vast expanse of scrub, see kudu stand on a dusty riverbed against the backdrop of the sunbleached mopani veld. His works are imbued with the textures and scents of Africa. These are vivid recollections of bushveld experiences. The scope and sheer scale of the sweeping vistas he paints require substantial technical authority. Yet he has a subtle eye capable of recording minute changes of light, the flicker of an antelopes ear, the damp shale after a passing storm.

Born in Johannesburg he trained at the School of Art under Professor Bain completing a commercial art course. He was employed as a production and layout artist, freelanced as an illustrator for several magazines and other
publications, then joined a publishing house for a further four years managing the production of books. Thereafter a three year spell in advertising. During these years as in his youth Francois spent most of his free time painting
landscapes.

At the age of 26 he started his painting career (1969). His first one-man exhibition was held in Pretoria Little Theatre (1971). As a result of this exhibition he received his first commission from Volkskas Bank.

The Lister Gallery held large one-man exhibitions of his work in the seventies. The 1974 and 1976 exhibitions entirely sold out. Successful exhibitions followed at Schweickerdt Gallery, Pretoria (1987)

The Sanderling Gallery Johannesburg (1988), The Everard Reade Landscape Exhibition (1988,1992), The Everard Reade Wildlife Exhibition (1990, 1991,1992,1993), The Cape Gallery Wildlife Exhibition (1993,1997,1998). An increased interest and exposure to collectors from London and the U.S.A marked this period.

Francois Koch has made paintings available to The Cape Gallery for the purpose of exhibition and sale since 1992. At this time he had a firmly established reputation as a landscape painter with considerable authority who could also portray wildlife with a deftness evocative of the virtual reality of the beast in the bush.

He moved to George wit his family during 1983 where he took pleasure in painting the magnificent local scenery.

His paintings are much sought after. The rapid devaluation of the S.A. rand and the increased demand for his work has lead to a rapid increase in the price of his work attracting investors. His work has been readily accepted for exhibition by the American art market and he has made application for a green card to settle in the U.S.A.

Francois Koch loves the broad vistas of the South African landscape. He keenly observes the location of his subject: the daily and seasonal fluctuations of light and weather. His intimate knowledge of the land he paints is born of a passion for 'the great outdoors' - a deeply felt connection to the bush and the vast expanse of the Karoo which he visits at every opportunity.

Private and Corporate Collectors.

Gypsum Industries, Haggie, Standard Bank, Volkskas Bank, SA Perm Building Society, Bosal, Satour, SA Embassies (World Wide), Spoornet, Johannesburg Stock Exchange, First National Bank, Reserve Bank, Tongaat Group, Iscor, Government Departments, P.W. Botha Airport George, National Parks Board, Anglo-American Corporation, GKN Mills, SABC, Elwierda Transport, SAAU, Total SA. Mr. James L.Atkinson president of Atkinson Petroleum LLC Seattle, Washington, Kenneth M. Gordon B.A. LLB of Equi Genesis, Toronto Canada, Mike Walsh Reedie & Company L.C. Dallas, Texas, Mr. F. Phillips Giltner Omaha, Nebraska, Mr. Phillip Hertz Bulverde, Texas, Mr. Roy Norman : Foschini, Cape Town.

Francois Koch paints 'The Great Outdoors'- the topography of the panoramas of the karoo and bushveld. Landscape has always been the central theme of South African. It is rooted in the pioneering impulse of the early settlers driven in search of freedom from the politcal and religious strife in Europe to seek new land to settle. The adventures and persistent hardships of that journey live on in stories told around the campfires today. A trip into the wilderness is part of the universal mythos of a rite of passage into manhood and responsibility. This is Francois Koch's heritage and in his paintings he unselfconsciously shares his point of view, he is close to the land he loves and knows the identity of each plant and animal.

Through his eyes we watch sheep huddling together as they traverse a vast expanse of scrub, see kudu stand on a dusty riverbed against the backdrop of the sunbleached mopani veld. His works are imbued with the textures and scents of Africa. These are vivid recollections of bushveld experiences. The scope and sheer scale of the sweeping vistas he paints require substantial technical authority. Yet he has a subtle eye capable of recording minute changes of light, the flicker of an antelopes ear, the damp shale after a passing storm.

Born in Johannesburg he trained at the School of Art under Professor Bain completing a commercial art course. He was employed as a production and layout artist, freelanced as an illustrator for several magazines and other
publications, then joined a publishing house for a further four years managing the production of books. Thereafter a three year spell in advertising. During these years as in his youth Francois spent most of his free time painting
landscapes.

Tags: Francois Koch

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