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Interview with Set & Costume Designer Anne Patterson

Posted Wednesday, October 28, 2009 - 2:17pm

How did the design process begin?
I felt pretty strongly that we had to have this very, very realistic home where the action is…At the same time I feel that Fugard’s writing is so incredibly poetic that I felt that there also needed to be something in the set to reflect that. And I also felt that it was important knowing that this home would probably be quite grim, depressing, that there was some sort of visual counter to that because as sad as the story is, there is definitely hope, and love and a real light within it. So I also looked at painters and sculptors for inspiration.

How did you land on Wolf Kahn for inspiration?
Wolf Kahn is one of my favorite painters, but surprisingly I’ve never used him before in any design. I felt that his sense of being able to distill nature down to the most beautiful single image in a very powerful way really worked for this piece.

And the more I started researching the Karoo and getting familiar with what that place really feels like and looks like, the more it seemed like the right direction to go -- especially people’s descriptions of it being so powerful and feeling that you’re very much connected to nature when you’re in that region.

So I showed some of his paintings and pastels to Blanka. Blanka actually found this really wonderful pastel by him [“A Slight Dip in the Landscape”] that we really used as our inspiration

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