Erna Wade

Born in Namibia, and having studied and lived in Potchefstroom and Pretoria, I now reside in the small town of Eshowe in KZN. I obtained a degree in sciences, but have always persued art as a passionate interest. In 2008 I was able to start doing art full time. My art is currently represented in private collections in South Africa, the UK, Australia, and the USA. 

Themes for my art emerge from my connectedness with nature, its subtleties and small surprises. I start a painting with a free, intuitive under painting of washes, textures, runs and drips, over which I then draw and paint the subject, allowing the under-painting to show through in areas.  I find exploring colours and textures in this way intensely satisfying. My favourite media are watercolour, acrylic and oil.

I completed a degree in Sciences, but always had the desire to do art. This resulted in my taking evening art classes, dreaming away many daytime hours in my office, drawing all sorts of designs on scraps of paper, or staring at the lovely sunshine outside, while trying hard to be a computer programmer! To be fair to all parties involved, I resigned my job after 6 years and started doing silk screen printing on textiles, also converting some of it into fashion wear, all of which I marketed, amongst other places, at art markets.

I relocated to the city, where I continued taking art lessons and participated in exhibitions with Lucy Doran. After getting married, I settled in Eshowe, a small town in KwaZulu-Natal. Here I painted murals at the Zulu cultural village, KwabekhiTunga (driving the 25km there every day in my grey 1965 VW Beatle loaded with art materials), where I was sometimes surprised by snakes in the low roof thatching, but also spent many hours listening to the beautiful calls of the bushland birds.

Due to personal circumstances, I became a teacher at the local private Christian School for eight years, after which I remarried in 2005 and was, eventually, able to pursue art on a more full-time basis, backed by the encouragement of my supporting husband.

My art is currently represented in private collections in South Africa, the UK, Australia, and the USA.