Originals Gallery, Harbour Road, Hermanus

In this exhibition Myburgh has continued to explore how our personal past affects our present.  She uses the metaphor of a sea journey by boat as a life story.  She anthropomorphizes the experiences of the boat by giving them feelings. She uses specific materials and techniques which create a sense of process and evolution – a history. Her artworks aim to reflect her inner world, subconscious and feelings; but also to evoke feelings and questions in the viewer.

Myburgh is particularly interested in how her personal family history has influenced her way of looking at the world.

Life is like a series of sea journeys in various kinds of vessels.  We take our baggage with us and encounter all sorts of scenarios.  Often the nature and extent of the baggage affects the quality of the journey.  At times we may feel like ‘wrecks’, and yet the journey still continues.

When we decide to go with the flow we abdicate taking responsibility for the course of our lives. This may seem a relaxed, flexible, trusting  attitudes life.  We are then at the mercy of external forces.  We will then go on an unplanned journey which exposes us to unexpected possibilities.  This route maybe interesting and even beautiful, but it could also get us into trouble or difficulties which could be very difficult to navigate.  Because of the initial attitude of lassitude, we maybe incapable or reluctant to take control again and steer ourselves to safe and calmer waters.

People reduced to living in tin shacks feel like chickens living in a “hoenderhok”.  They scratch out a living, surviving on other people’s scraps. They are born, they eat, sleep and then die.  They are unable to live a life worth living – they merely exist.  They have lost their right to human dignity. They become demented crazy creatures.

We are eternally bound to our past.  It does not only form us, but continues to determine how we navigate our present.  We unconsciously and consciously follow the patterns of our past.  We continuously follow the patterns.  Always doing the same.  Things don’t really change.  Sometimes we expect them to.  But this would require a conscious effort to question why we do things the way we do, and in what way we could do things differently.  But it is more comfortable and comforting to repeat old patterns.  We feel safe and at peace.

This phenomenon has serious implications when society needs to evolve to to make it a better place e.g. The new South Africa, Climate change, etc.  when ways of being and doing are hardwired into people’s brains, they think that it is the natural order of things.

Our spinal column is what allows us to walk upright and be so called civilized sentient beings.  It allows us incredible flexibility and versatility.  However under certain stressful circumstances we become so overextended and expect too much of ourselves.  A normal human response to such trauma may be to shut down and revert to primal baby behavior, such as rocking, which reduces us to being non functional. We are better off going back to the nursery and being cared for by others.

This series of paintings explores the subconscious .  I wondered what would happen if I started observing , identifying  and naming some of the “goggas” in my subconscious.  Of course they would no longer be part of my subconscious, but would be part of my conscious thinking.  They would come out of the dark and into the light. However this is not an event, it is a process.