ISOBEL O’CONNOR, SOUTH AFRICA
Isobel O’Connor holds a fine art degree from the Johannesburg College of Art. She taught in the art department of the Natal Technicon for several years before embarking on extensive travels and settling abroad. She focused on private commissions during her time overseas as well as committed to freelance for Harper’s Bazaar. Her fashion illustrations attracted international recognition and awards. In 2012 she returned to South Africa and dedicates herself full-time to fine art again. She works predominantly in pastels and charcoal. Her work reveals contradiction, from very fluid charcoal shading techniques to detailed, photographic sketching; these are calculated means to capture the subject. Her main focus remains on searching for the soul through the eyes of the subject. The viewer is drawn into an intense experience of being looked at as well as a powerful sensation of looking “into”.