Anje Cronje (20) is the only visual artist and youngest person to date to win the Sophie Mgcina prize for upcoming artists.
This prize is named after the actress and coach Sophie Mgcina, who is best known for The Long Journey of Poppie Nongena. Not only did she play the two lead roles in the stage production, but also composed the music and directed the orchestra.
Originally from Aberdeen and currently studying architecture in Bloemfontein, Anje’s artwork reflects the expressions and life of some Aberdeen residents.
She says that she learns about the people around her through her artwork, and sees the beauty of every person with their interesting faces. Anje modestly says that she tries to capture this on paper, and judging by the acclaim she has received, she has succeeded admirably in making people aware of the faces, cultures and traditions around her.
An exhibition of her work has been on show this month at the Market Theatre in Johannesburg, as part of the month-long Women’s Day celebrations at the theatre complex. All the artwork currently on display was drawn in Aberdeen.
Anje’s mother Cornelia, herself a talented artist, is extremely proud of her daughter, who has been able to laugh and persevere through some extremely challenging times.