In a major publication, 10 Years 100 Artists: Art In A Democratic South Africa (2004), artist and curator, Sharlene Khan, writes: 'The economic hardship that was many South Africans' experience during the apartheid era, still continues to haunt many individuals today. Economics is a determining factor that has played a huge role in the life and work of Sophie Peters. A muralist, painter and sculptor as well, it is Peters' prints that continue to haunt me, years after I first saw them.'
'Peters' work is a visual recounting of her personal history, detailing all that has happened to her and all the people who've come and gone down the years', Khan writes. 'Peters' life has been punctuated by hard times: she received little formal education, spent some time as a shack dweller…'
'However, her work is not merely a portrayal of despair, poverty or hopelessness. While her work certainly alludes to the socio-economic realities spawned by the history of this country …. her work also deals with the triumph of the human spirit in such circumstances'.Workshops and Residencies
Zabalaza Festival, London (1990)
Print 2000, Maastricht (2000)
Caversham Press, Kwa-Zulu Natal (2001)
Greatmore Studios, Cape Town (2001)
Selected Group Exhibitions
She has been featured in more than 25 exhibitions in South Africa and internationally, including:
2003 Dreams of our Daughters, Klein Karoo Nasonale Kunstefees, Oudtshoorn
2001 Canada - Group show
2000 Germany- Group show
2000 Iceland - Group show
1998 Artists for Africa, Sweden
1998 Dis Nag - The Cape's Hidden Roots in Slavery, Cultural History Museum and South African National Gallery, Cape Town
1997-8 Sicula Sixhentsa Xa Sisonke: The South African Aesthetic, (Travelling Exhibiton), U.S.A.
1995 Relief in Black and White, Brighton, U.K.
1996 Art Against Apartheid, South African Parliament, Cape Town
1995 Peace for Africa, Geneva, Switzerland
1994 Travelling Exhibition, U.S.A.
1993 S.A. National Gallery, Cape Town
1990 Zabalaza Festival, Institute for Contemporary Art (ICA), London
Selected Solo Exhibitions
1995 Cry from the Heart, Bellville Association for the Arts, Cape Town
S.A. National Gallery, Cape Town
Durban Art Gallery
Constitutional Court of S.A., Johannesburg
In South Africa, Europe, U.S.A. and Australia
2004 10 Years 100 Artists: Art In A Democratic South Africa (2004, Bell-Roberts Publishing in association with Struik Publishers, Cape Town)
2000 G.Warren-Brown: Leadership in New American Publishing, March
1999 R. Christian: THE HOURGLASS PROJECT - A WOMAN'S VISION, Catalogue (Fulton County arts Council, Atlanta, U.S.A)
1992 Andries Oliphant: Culture and Empowerment: Debates, Workshops, Art And Photography from the Zabalaza Festival' in Staffrider, Vo.10. no.3
Numerous book illustrations, including four for Juta Publishers;
Mural commissions for Cape Town City Council (1994);
University of Western Cape (1996);
Protea Hotel, Sea Point, Cape Town (2004)'
Part of several group commissions for murals, including Nico Opera House, Cape
Town - now known as Artscape Opera House (1994); Department of Health (1996)
and District Six Museum, Cape Town. (1996).
Also commissions from Robben Island Museum (1996); Cape Span (2004); and
Pentecostal Rapha Mission (2004- 05).
For book illustrations (1994)
What is your favourite film of all time?!
'The Passion' is my all time favourite, but I like films based on true stories
What music are you currently listening to and why?
pop mixed with rock - I write my own songs and music to tell the story of what is happening in my life.
Which living artists do you most admire and why?
Willie Bester- he grew from taking photographs and collage made with crushed colddrink tins to sculpture out of found materials.He inspired me to work in mixed media.
Which deceased artist do you most admire and why?
Cecil Skotnes - I like the way he does his woodcuts, and the style of his woodcuts.
Which exhibition that you have visited made the greatest impact on you and why?
Cecil Skotnes in Grahamstown - it just blew me away.
What/ who inspired you to be an artist?
I started drawing as a child with water colours and pastels after I started seeing paintings of artists hanging in galleries and I thought “gosh’. But before that I was already doing woodcuts out of the trays used for selling vegetables.
What do you like most about being an artist?
creating work from the dream inside - I must create this painting that is in my heart and head
What is your greatest achievement as an artist to date?
I painted a whole room, creating a Cape Town scene for the Protea Hotel in Sea Point, Cape Town in 2004. It took me 2 months, painting day and night.
What are your plans for the coming year?
To hold a couple of solo exhibitions.