Kamogelo Masemola’s diverse and experimental painting practice resists easy characterisation. His work includes structured, figurative compositions, capturing the world of South African jazz, yet he is recognized for his abstract paintings that feature-rich bursts of colour, atomised forms and layers of paint as well as strong geometric elements.
His paintings combine representation, abstraction and colouration, minimalism and gesturalism. His unique technique of manipulating layers and layers of oil paint, using a heat gun and paintbrush evoke the idea of action painting. While his references are broad, he describes his main inspiration coming from nature – he captures the emotional essence of water, fire and earth while incorporating structured elements, reminiscent of his love for industrial design.
Distilled to essences of shape and colour, his paintings always foreground the particularities of the medium, its defining characteristics. The viewer is captured by the bold beauty of his work, the movement, creation and destruction of shapes and exquisite combination of colours, a deeper exploration reveals the underlying tension between abstracted, natural beauty and geometric exactness, an inconsistency that characterises present-day human existence.
His uses a meticulous and process-oriented approach, and his paintings realize the triumphs and struggles of the artist’s practice, control and chaos, making and unmaking, beauty and destruction. The resulting paintings have a dramatic, exuberant quality.