Mirage (2019) – hand-pulled screen print by Renée Rossouw
Renée Rossouw (b. 1985) is an artist, designer and architect based in Cape Town. Not yet ten years into her career, she has wasted no time in racking up a veritable catalogue of accolades across the creative spheres – from pattern and product design to murals and art. Graphic, bold and colourful, Rossouw’s artworks are informed by a vast personal “library” of shapes and patterns – observed, recorded, transformed and abstracted over the years; stored in sketchbooks, on walls and inside plastic boxes. These individual elements hold infinite variations of meaning, further unfolded as forms are selected, combined and composed in a process distinctly playful and inventive, a process as significant as the end result. Rossouw’s inspiration is kaleidoscopic, drawn from 1980s Lego sets and national flags, architectural mishaps and nature’s “language of geometries”; her primary objective to “explore the dimensions of our natural world and the versatile environments of South Africa”.
After obtaining her master’s degree in architecture in 2009, Rossouw was one of 13 students selected for the prestigious master’s programme in product design at European Design Labs, Madrid, under director Jaime Hayon. Her career has continued in this vein of multidisciplinary, acclaimed practice, with highlights including: a collaboration with IKEA in 2017 and again in 2019; a sell-out solo show at the Voorkamer Gallery in 2016; participation in the Venice Biennale, Milan Saloni di Mobile, Madrid Art Fair, Moscow Design Week and Design Indaba; selection as 100% Design South Africa’s Feature Designer and recipient of the Best Product Design award in 2015. She is also a lecturer at UCT’s School of Architecture and has delivered talks at Design Indaba and Madrid Design Net Conference.