Sculpting freedom of thought

 
 
 

The clay horse towers over its creator. A life-sized artwork, it embodies the natural prowess of the galloping animal. Vincent Da Silva’s sculptures are testament to his deft handiwork. Though frozen in time, the statues have a movement to them. Unlike the smooth marble figures of ancient Greece, Da Silva’s art is cast in bronze and flecked with blemishes from his tools. With his textural monuments, the artist reflects a freethinking philosophy.

“I’ve always created from a very young age,” Da Silva says. “It comes as naturally to me as breathing.” Throughout his time studying architecture, Da Silva sculpted, opening his first gallery before he completed his degree. When it came down to choosing between the two, there was no denying his affinity for sculpture. “I find it difficult to imagine myself doing anything else,” Da Silva says. In the early years of his career he focused on wildlife, capturing a rhino’s strength or the fluidity of a cheetah. Today, Da Silva turns his attention to the formation of human identity through charcoal drawings and figure sculptures.

Stepping into Da Silva’s studio is like exploring a world of unfamiliar creatures, each hinting at a deeper complexity. “I prefer not to impose meaning on my work,” he says. “What people feel is never dictated by me.” In an era where we are bombarded with new information, the artist creates a space to free the mind at the Vincent Da Silva Gallery in Stellenbosch. “I would love to contribute to a legacy that embraces independent thinking,” he says. His work cast in honesty, Da Silva is moulding individuality.