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Born: 26th June, 1952, Simonstown Portfolio

From a very young age, before he even went to school Patrick was drawing whenever he found a spare moment. He describes his natural ability to be able to draw and paint so well as a "God-given talent" and it was always something that he wanted to do all his life. He went to the local school in Simonstown and it was when he came home in the afternoons that he learnt a lesson that he feels is very important. His father was a full time teacher and when he came home in the evenings he would mark his classes' books. When Patrick was in Standard 3 he went into his own father's class and in the afternoons he would sit with his father and watch him mark the books and do his homework. His father told him then that everything had to be done properly. If you started something then it should be finished and that if you want to score your goals in life, then you have to try hard and not give up until your task is completed.

High School
The first high school that Patrick went to was Heathfield which was situated in the Cape Flats. He then went to Genadendal High School which was in the Caledon area before going to the art school in Woodstock where he learnt a lot and created things like labels, postcards etc. Apart from art Patrick also had a keen interest in classical music. His favorite two instruments are the cello and the piano and he really wishes that he could play them.

Patrick's first job was at the Sanlam Insurance Company. He soon moved on to work at the ABSA bank, but his heart was never in his work and art kept calling him. He described his work to be by saying it was like eating onions. You really don't like them but you get told that they are good for you, so you eat them with a blocked nose. Patrick then went to an art exhibition in Johannesburg in 1994. It was at the exhibition that he saw a life size shack. The shack looked so realistic that he felt as if he wanted to meet the family that lived inside. Patrick decided that he would try to bring that image into other peoples' houses but he would have to bring the size down as not many people can fit a shack in their house, so in 1996, Patrick quit his job and went into art full time, because even though he had been doing sketches as a hobby this was not enough to fulfil his love for art.

However, art did not bring in a lot of money but he didn't give up. At one stage though he had absolutely nothing. So for the first time he sat down and did a three-dimensional painting. He then had to steal a ride on a train to get to the art gallery in Cape Town. He went in with his painting and thought that he would be laughed at but when the shopkeeper saw this new style she was amazed and gave Patrick R65 (which was a nice amount of money back in those days) for the painting. Now at least he would catch the train home legally and get a loaf of bread, some milk and some tea. Patrick was overjoyed. The paintings were wanted all the time and Patrick could hardly keep up with all the orders. At first it took him about seven days to complete a painting but now he takes about five days per painting. He has changed his technique as well. He now uses masonite as a base for his acrylics, whereas he used to use cardboard. He has always painting either still lives, usually of bowls of fruit, or paintings of District Six which brings back a lot of memories. However, none of the buildings he paints are still there as the government sadly destroyed it during the apartheid. He does his sawing and cretestone work outside, and then the painting inside. Patrick now lives in Eerste River where he finds life simple. He says now that he is painting, he feels satisfied with life.

However, he was sadly hijacked and driven around by four men for 34 hours about a month or two ago, but he says that he prayed and he could somehow see himself driving home the next day and that everything would be alright.

Patrick has two well-known artists that are very close to him. The one is Dr Peter Clarke who is well known overseas and the other is Willie Bester who is more local to the Western Cape. Patrick looks up to and admires Willie Bester. He is a sculptor but also does paintings using scrap metal and Patrick says that the paintings he does are amazing. Patrick is going to keep on working with his amazing art. He feels that he still has so much to learn and he says to younger artists that the only way they will become artists is to keep trying and never give up.

Patrick Mokhuane
View larger image
Title: Still life with Pears 1
Size: 24 x 42 cm
Media: Mixed media
Price: R 5 800 Framed


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