Beatrice Nyembe

Beatrice Nyembe was born at Mangweni, not far from the original Ardmore studio in the Drakensberg.

She had no formal schooling, five children to care for and had never worked before, but, inspired by her grandmother, a skilled rural potter, she joined Ardmore in 1991.

Like her friend and former colleague, Beauty Ntshalintshali, Beatrice handcoiled big, wonderfully generous forms that were not unlike the traditional Zulu ukhamba pots her grandmother would have made.

Her teapots, tureens, jugs, bowls and candlesticks were strikingly bold in concept and full of energy.

She also developed her own speciality: square-shaped jugs and enormous, large-legged bowls decorated with animals.

Beatrice’s creations have been exhibited all over South Africa and formed a major part of the Christie’s exhibitions in 2003 and 2004, as well as at the State President’s London Residence in 2005.

The historic significance of Beatrice’s work has been recognised and examples are held in the permanent collection of the Tatham Art Gallery in Pietermaritzburg.

Beatrice retired in 2006 to spend more time with her family.

Exhibitions

1990


Diminicus GalleryJohannesburg

1992


Volkskas ExhibitionDurban

The Natal RouteFerguson Fine Art, Johannesburg

1995


'The Spirit of our Stories' (print exhibition)Grahamstown

1992-1996


Gallery on TyroneJohannesburg

1994


Natal Society of Arts exhibitionDurban

1996


Meklenberg, Groote SchuurCape Town

1997


State President's Guest HouseBryntirion Estate, Pretoria

Catalyst GalleryJohannesburg

1998


Germany ExhibitionSouth African Embassy Residence, Bonn, Germany

Germany ExhibitionMarl Concert Hall, Marl, Germany

Germany ExhibitionSiegen, Germany

Germany ExhibitionThyssen Forum, Dusseldorf, Germany

Everard Read GalleryJohannesburg

1999


Bordeaux St GalleryFranschhoek, Western Cape

Gallery on TyroneJohannesburg

2000


ABSA BankJohannesburg

2001


International Ceramic Arts FestivalWales

Hospice ExhibitionJohannesburg

SA Embassy ExhibitionKuala Lumpur, Malaysia

2002


Charles Greig JewellersHyde Park, Johannesburg

2003


Christie’s ExhibitionLondon

2004


Christie’s AuctionLondoh

City Arts CouncilEdinburgh, Scotland

2005


Private ExhibitionHigh Commissioner, Highveld, London

Christopher GreigHyde Park, Johannesburg

2006


Amaridian GalleryNew York

Private exhibitionHigh Commissioner, Highveld, London

Everard Read GalleryJohannesburg