Susan Proctor Hume is a South African artist whose works have been exhibited at the Louvre. She only began painting in February 2014, so this represented an impressive start for a promising artist. The exhibited artwork was sold to a London surgeon – the event was ‘International Artists in Louvre Museum’.

A 53-year-old mother of two, Proctor Hume is the daughter of an artist (her mother was a painter, sculptor, ceramicist and poet), who grew up in Johannesburg immersed in artistic culture. However, she never formally studied art and says that she picked up a paint brush after a bout of stress-induced illness left her feeling the need to pursue a more artistic direction.

This artist says that she paints completely from her heart and is inspired by nature, politics, religion, colour / tone, romance, faces and world events; she draws life experiences to conceptualise her artworks. Current pieces include simple shapes and forms, as well as a combination of abstract and figurative creations. So her subject matter varies from religious iconic, social commentary, environmental, love and sensuality – plus marine life as well as portraits and experiments with shape and colour.

Working mostly in oil on canvas, Proctor Hume has recently branched out into mixed media and is incorporating ‘found things’ in her work. She adds: ‘I’m still trying to find my artistic voice and currently my style varies hugely; although I’ve noted that many established artists went through diverse stages in the early days of their careers, so I feel sure I will discover my niche in time.’

In fact, she was so new to this artistic calling that when she attended a sketching workshop hosted by artist Claire Menck, she recalls being extremely nervous as she’d never sketched before in her life. ‘It went very well and I can’t believe that I had waited so long to pick up a pencil, palette knife and paintbrush.

‘I’ve been most fortunate to have travelled to places such as Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Europe and the USA; and have picked up inspiration from the most unlikely of places and events. For example: when I saw dilapidated buildings, or a particular floor tile in an old train station in Lisbon, I couldn’t resist taking a photo. Another area close to my heart is animal welfare and I use art as a platform to bring awareness to causes such as Anti Dog-meat Friends (ADF) in Korea and Cruelty to Bulls and Dogs in Spain and Romania.’

The artist’s series of paintings called Rounds depicts layer upon layer of earthen colours in rounded forms. She says: ‘I try to achieve a pure and clear final product.’

Susan Proctor Hume’s work has been noticed by private collectors both locally and abroad and it is anticipated that following her arrival on the European art scene – through her exhibit at the Louvre – her paintings will become increasingly popular with collectors and art appreciators. On the 9th and 10th of September 2016 she will be showcased at the Rotterdam International Art Fair.

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