Ever since I first picked up a paint brush with my mother as a little girl, the compulsion to paint has dominated my life. I know that the extraordinary colours, light and contrasts of Zimbabwe where I grew up and had to leave in 2002, are to blame. Art became and has ever been my friend, supporting my children and I throughout.
Starting with exhibitions of animals and flowers at the age of sixteen I have expanded my repertoire to include landscapes and country scenes, harbours, twilight and moon light scenes and even space and galaxy paintings. Ever conscious of those who like and buy my work, and delivering true value to them, I have not succumbed to the temptations of limited editions or mass market prints. Each picture I paint is an original with no one painting being the same as another.
ABOUT THE SCULPTURES
Being the impetuous person I am, I ordered a container of metal animals from Zimbabwe with huge conviction to share these pieces with all of my art collectors and for the many who have no wall space left! This body of work has been in my studio for well over two years. I really didn’t know where to start or what to do with them. The talent of these Zimbabwean sculptors is so remarkable - it blows my mind that each piece is crafted out of scrap metal. They are rough, raw and so honest. My dilemma was how to turn outdoor sculptures into something that could be a treasure in ones home and could combine all my art techniques. Initially I panicked as I had no idea how to autograph these making them authentic Roz Bell art. It felt imperative to put my heart and soul into them as the artisans had done back in Zimbabwe, ensuring these pieces garner the credit they so deserve.
Fortunately for me, my husband is a skilled craftsman in his own right and came up with the genius idea that to use resins and fillers to give me a blank paintable canvas so to speak. Once I had the animal in front of me I approached them as I do a painting, using my layering technique. Three layers of paint three layers of resin, building up my colours and effects.
To add to the story of these pieces - the director of Birdwoods, Joy Denton has worked tirelessly to keep their business running in Zimbabwe. I can say that Birdwoods was the very first to start this unique concept of scrap metal animals in Southern Africa - they have subsequently been copied at a far poorer quality and no doubt with the artists receiving very little of what they deserve. Birdwoods look after their artists integrity at all times and I know that the artisans had an honourable payment and all transactions are transparent and fair. I know only too well how Africa can be exploited.