When making site-specific work, I anticipate the public’s movement through that space to ensure the work retains meaning through a participatory logic. This aspect of intervention, alongside my concern for the environment, has led me to create work that is not only situational but “environmental” in the most basic sense, impacting the immediate location around it. My works are often made from industrial waste such as mining core, both to reduce my environmental footprint and to expand the possibilities of material reuse. In all of my work, the unknown, uncertain or out-of-place are constant spurs to my approach, which I experience first and foremost as a process of figuring out. Curiosity continues to get the better of me.
Hannelie Warrington-Coetzee (b. 1971, South Africa) is a visual artist based in Johannesburg. Her relational practice regularly centers on public spaces, where she produces artwork that ranges from ephemeral to permanent. Originating out of her respect and concern for the environment, Coetzee employs found materials, most often reclaimed industrial waste, to form unlikely partnerships with the surrounding land. Research into these materials and the context of their deployment on-site remains a fundamental component of Coetzee’s process, allowing her to orient her work around its immediate community and locate meaning inherent to the materials used. Across disciplines, Coetzee’s practice seeks to marry environmental science and social action to better encourage empathy for and engagement with nature.
Coetzee received a BTech degree in social documentary photography from the Vaal University for Technology in 1994, followed by an Advanced Diploma in Fine Arts with distinction at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits 1997). In 2022 she completed her Master of Science dissertation (with distinction) on the role of art-science as a medium for social action at the Wits Animal, Plants and Environmental Science School titled: Eco-art for a transformative climate culture. MSC 2022 – Hannelie Warrington-Coetzee – FINAL – 26 October 2022