“What got you into motorcycles?” I think apart from “where are you from?” this is one of the questions I answer the most. It seems peculiar to many that a girl would choose to paint these machines willingly. It also adds to the confusion that the brand is named after a man named “Claude,” my late grandfather. I just smile at these moments, for this then allows me to tell the tale, even if only for a few sentences, of the giants who walked before me and honour them.
I really don’t have just one favourite. I think it would be like picking one of your own kids from a bunch and labeling them as such. But this piece has a special place reserved. The motorcycle caught my eye immediately. I had nothing to say; I just got sucked in to stare at the simple stance, the mind-blowing detail. I had to try to paint a version of it and changed the colours here and there from the original photo.
When I see this one at expos, I get that silent smile on my face. When folks approach me to talk them through the pieces and we stop at this one, it evokes the same reaction overtime. Silence. I don’t need to say anything. The laced detail does all the talking. A full conversation in a headlong stare.
I didn’t know what to name this one at first. I was preparing for my debut expo in early March last year, and after seeing that the theme was “Overcome,” this piece got its name after conversing over some deep, dark dead ends we have walked. I experimented with all monochrome shades, and this caught my eye. What makes this piece so popular is that it could be anybody’s motorcycle in there. You can imagine your own and the road that lies waiting, requiring you to take heart and take to its unknown. The old school helmet and goggles are such a rare touch.
Her Heart I
Oh my gosh. So this is possibly the most feminine piece of machinery I have painted. Just look at it. Strong and bold, grit and grace. The colours are so fluid and delicate, and you could imagine them still wet.
Watercolor paintings by Claudia Liebenberg.