Yakkov Seidman

I was born in Romania in 1953, and educated in Israel at the University of Tel-Aviv. I have been a resident in South Africa since 1981. I am an electronics engineer by profession. I discovered art later in life and began my artistic journey attending life-drawing classes focusing on the female form. I studied art at the University of Witwatersrand. 

My favorite medium is charcoal , oil paint and ink, any medium that one can physically use his hand as a tool. In my charcoal and oil artworks, many times one can see the marks of my hands in the art work. For me this brings a more spontaneous mark from the brain to paper and canvas, I don’t have the interference of the brush, the brush creates a delay and you lose the energy and spontaneity.  I enjoy experimenting and exploring a variety of artistic media from oil, charcoal, mixed media, print-making, cyanotype photography andceramics.

My work explores many themes ranging from the human form to still life and abstraction. I am particularly interested in dealing with the human condition - relating to love, alienation and culture. I like exploring the literary works of the Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca and my work is often influenced by his poetry and plays. In Lorca’s “The Public” he dealt with different masks that people wear. I like observing the masks that people and communities like wearing, I would like to expose them and show the truth behind them - which is sometimes ugly!

Being an artist affords me more freedom of speech, maybe a knowledge that I don’t have to behave always as society or the community expects me to, I don’t have to think as expected, I don’t have to do as expected. In my eyes art must be critical, I am critical of all art. (I am not so critical to myself sometimes - there must be a limit.)

Life, society, community, news - all those are The PUBLIC, and inform and inspire my work. And then you can find in my work the nude female body. I draw or paint only nudes, and I am not much interested in the faces of the models. Unconsciously the female body may represent the complete truth, one can’t mask it; the face or facial expressions may be a mask