Ronél de Jager’s debut solo exhibition, After Midnight, forms part of her larger ongoing project exploring the transformative power inherent in the constant, shifting presence of cast shadows and filtered light. Taking her cue from the Oxford Dictionary definition of ‘A.M.’ meaning ‘between midnight and midday’, shadows become a metaphor for the ephemeral nature of reality, a world both present and absent, simultaneously formed and diffused by the play of light in the hours extending across night and day.
This multi-media, multi-spatial exhibition unfolds in three parts, spanning a series of divergent spaces. As each new element of the project is unveiled, its previous incarnations exist in memory.
Across this evolving body of work, the recording and capturing of light acts as a register of moments of silence, movement, flux, transition and metamorphosis. As the works develop over time and across location, images might trigger recollections of the experiences, images and spaces gone before. In this way, De Jager’s artworks, like the traces of light from which they evolve, become fragments of a greater whole – chance encounters that either resonate and linger, or are seen and forgotten.
After my brother was diagnosed with brain cancer in December 2010, I began to perceive light and shadows as an integral and unnoticed part of the passing of time, which hardly filters into our fragmented everyday consciousness. I started to vigilantly observe the shadows on my bedroom walls as I fell asleep at night and the shadows of the morning light when I awoke. The reflection of light through windows and trees has always been a kind of gateway of wonder for me. Once I became aware of the changing yet persistent occurrence of shadows, I came to see this diffused and filtered world as an echo of the thoughts, emotions and movements that run beneath the surface our lives.
- This exhibition is dedicated to my brother, Marius de Jager (1976 - 2013).
- De Jager 2014
Space #3, 70 Juta Precinct, Juta Street, Braamfontein, Johannesburg
+27 (0)72 155 4934 l l
Gallery Hours: Tues– Fri 11h00 – 16h00, Saturday 10h00 – 15h00
As a starting point to this extensive new body of work, De Jager explores the transient qualities of time, space and memory. Imagery and music are juxtaposed in an interactive video installation combined with paintings to capture the elusive quality of time.
This presentation is made possible through the collaboration with Marelize Koch on the soundtrack, Carly Whitaker on the interactive component, Thomas Pretorius in the editing process as well as videography and the support of the ROOM team.
An Interlude is the second instalment of De Jager’s three-part debut solo exhibition After Midnight and unfolds in the darkened basement of Turbine Hall. By means of a specialised rotating camera mount (created in collaboration with cinematographer Thomas Pretorius), a video projection, capturing the circular motion of a ‘sky view scene’, is projected onto a layer of luminous material overhead. A soft echoing soundtrack enhances a simultaneous sense of immersion and isolation, as the viewer is drawn upward toward an endless sky.
Developing over time and across locations, each instalment of After Midnight unveils elements that recalls and resonates with previous exhibition/s. An interlude follows on the sense of transience, movement and flux evoked in A Prelude, becoming a ‘pause moment’ for reflection, solitude and silence; both exhibitions culminating in the final episode scheduled for February 2015.
Turbine Hall, 65 Ntemi Piliso Street, Newtown, Johannesburg
+27 (0)11 575 3698 l l
Tickets available at
The sense of movement, flux and change evoked in Part I and the ‘pause moment’ for reflection suggested by Part II come together in this culminating episode of the A.M. project, which draws together the contrapuntal tenors of the two previous shows. Featuring an installation of paintings, and video projections interacting with a central sculptural installation, this multi-media exhibition draws on the conceptual narratives brought to light by the project as a whole.
By means of a process through which filtered light is captured and translated into paint as it moves across the blank canvas, I aim to register moments of silence, movement, flux, transition and change. The painted image becomes a ‘trace of the real’, refigured and retraced, the site of a process of transformation, of working through trauma. Tensions between form and formlessness, consciousness and sub-consciousness are played out on the painted surface. At once abstract and recognisable, photographic and painterly, the layered surface registers a physical engagement with the psyche. It becomes a trace of the real, refigured and re-enacted – a link to a world both present and absent, simultaneously formed and diffused by the play of light.
- De Jager 2014
155 Jan Smuts Ave, Parkwood, Johannesburg
+27 (0)11 880 8802 l l
Gallery Hours: Tues– Fri 10h00 – 17h00, Saturday 10h00 – 15h00
Exhibition trailer for A.M. (After Midnight) : A Prelude
A.M. (AFTER MIDNIGHT)
A three-part multi media debut solo exhibition by Ronél de Jager
Exhibition trailer for A.M. (After Midnight) : An Interlude
Commentary from visitors at
A PRELUDE exhibition:
"An excellent show beautifully executed with subtle images and poignant sound.”
" I love that it's an immersive experience for the audience, the art is prime and center. "
" This exhibition reminds me of the voyager, a spacecraft carrying a golden disc with information about earth."
" ... it forces the audience to examine their own planet through the mundane but beautiful. This is a truly inspirational piece. Immersive. Thought provoking. Beautiful. "
"De Jager's approach is captivating, giving her work the edge over many more traditional projects in the same genre." - Saturday Citizen, 30 June 2014
"One imagines that Edward Hopper would do something similar if he were alive today.” - Chris Thurman, Business Day, 19 June 2014
Commentary from visitors at
AN INTERLUDE exhibition:
“I felt as if the world stayed still for a second. Meaningful and brilliant!”
“It is ethereal and very spiritual and has a kind of lightness about it”
“Mesmerising . Hypnotic. Enchanting. Gorgeous . I feel rejuvenated!"
“A surreal experience! What an extraordinary creation."
“WOW. Very moving. Spiritual and beautiful".
Commentary from visitors at
A.M. After Midnight exhibition:
“ I was touched by the sense of motion in the paintings and the connection to nature I felt.”
“ I am totally moved to the senses of my core by this exhibition. The quality of painting is mesmerising, the mood that the artist manage to portray and express washes over your soul. I am blown away.”
“ A wonderful slice of peace and tranquility. "
“ WOW! You are the best! thank you."
“ The exhibition was very inspiring, it brings night time into the day. Truly amazing how the artist managed to achieve this."