Jul 7 – Jul 27, 2021

Everard Read presents Hanien Conradie’s latest solo exhibition.

In Spoorloos,[1] Hanien Conradie deepens her ongoing enquiry concerning place and belonging from her location as an Afrikaner female living in Southern Africa. The primary inspiration for this exhibition originated in an artists’ residency in the vast and desolate Tankwa Karoo Desert which is located in the Western Cape in South Africa.

The body of work consists of various reinterpretations of landscape painting within the contemporary moment of imminent ecological collapse, growing technological dominance and humanity’s rapid alienation from the rest of nature. Conradie mourns the mounting collective amnesia regarding humanity’s position as an inextricable part of the Earth. As an earth-concerned painter and in order to bring locatedness to her work, Conradie continues to converse with burnt plant material and found ochre as powerful representatives originating from the natural places she visits. By creating various practices of relation with natural matter, Conradie strains to remember the echoes of humanity’s ancient relationship with the Earth.

Where her Raaswater (2019) focused mainly on water, rainmaking rites and rivers, Spoorloos (2021) is located within the element of air. Here Conradie works with the archetype of the magician, with ritual prayer and with the Kármán Line: a place where the earth’s atmosphere becomes too thin for aeroplanes to achieve flight and where the rest of the universe begins.

At its most expanded, Spoorloos can be seen as a selection of paintings in natural pigments, ritual prayer pieces, poems and performances contemplating encounters with the Traceless.


Born in Cape Town (1972), Hanien Conradie’s education includes degrees in both architecture and fine arts. In 2012, she entered a 3-year period of post-graduate studies at the Michaelis School of Fine Art, University of Cape Town.  She graduated (with distinction) with a Master of Fine Art (2015) focused on an enquiry based on ecology and painting. Conradie has since participated in numerous ecological exhibitions located in Southern Africa, Europe and the USA. 

Conradie is an active contributor to interdisciplinary symposiums, websites and artists’ residencies where ecological research is conducted through creative practice. 


[1]Spoorloos’ translates as ‘without a trace’ ‘trackless’; ‘traceless’




My deepest gratitude and thanks to the following contributors: 


40 Prayers From the Desert 

Niall Campbell - Foundational Design

Lisa Fisher -Principal Seamstress 

Bukiwe Mpokela- Assistant Seamstress 

Deirdre Renniers - Volunteer seamstress 

Suzy Amoils - Volunteer seamstress 

Philippa Higgins - Volunteer seamstress 


Metalwork - Ettienne De Kock 


Scroll 1 and Scroll 2 

Principal Seamstress - Lisa Fisher 

Assistant Seamstress - Bukiwe Mpokela

Brass Pins - Heidi Liebenberg 

Carpentry- Peter Adamo  

Metalwork - Ettienne De Kock 



by Idille Kellerman from Framed



for the catalogue by Stephen Gibson from ArtAssist 


Film production 

by Kleonicky Vanos


Thank you to the wonderful team at Everard Read for your assistance support and enthusiasm. Special thanks to Emma Van der Merwe for her subtle direction and vision for the show. 

Thank you to my parents, Pieter and Helena Conradie for their support and involvement in my work. Thank you for letting me stand on your shoulders. 

Thank you to Colin Campbell for believing in my work, for your continued philosophical influence and for, as David Goldblatt described, ‘going beyond the lace curtain’ with me and into the vastness of the Land. Thank you for joining me in my quest for possible answers to questions of belonging, place and loss. 


*Face masks are required and must be worn at all times when visiting the gallery