It was a chilly July morning mid-lockdown the day I first encountered the serenity of a Dodds Blom work. Trade Wind had opened for take-aways and we had plonked our well-walked bodies down for a moment as we waited for our hot drinks. Swaddled in obligatory masks, head-hugging beanies and down puffers, we defiantly risked our “clean slates” each day for the exhilaration of some crunch underfoot and a hint of spray on wind-whipped faces.
These illicit walks under rigorous lockdown rule were tainted with angst, even as we thumbed our noses at the powers-that-be.
It was a time of deprivation and prohibition. Our beloved beaches irrationally whisked away, and no beer or wine to dull the pain.
A Dodds Blom wavescape on Trade Wind’s wall was a thing of beauty poised upon my path in otherwise horrible and uncertain times. It provided a sense of immediate relief and reconnection with what I missed most.
And is this not the purposes of art? – to help us encounter something that is otherwise elusive – the peace, the freedom, the love, the beauty we find missing.
Dodds has developed a signature style that captures the endless summer of our beloved St Francis Bay and Seals. He does it in a way that feels quite heavenly, and in so doing emphasises the piece of paradise that is our patch.
His puritan wave sets under candyfloss clouds point to to the perfection of Bruce’s Beauties, a name given to the metered swell that peels through our ocean when the offshore blows.
I recently had the pleasure of chatting to Dodds over a beer at the Full Stop. Handsome and quietly self-possessed, the doting father of two spoke of his other great passion. An accomplished self-taught guitarist, Dodds has worked as a professional musician in all genres including Classical and Spanish guitar. He currently offers guitar lessons in Cape St Francis.
After matriculating at Victoria Park High in Port Elizabeth, he studied art at PE Technikon for two years, where he says he learned nothing. “And you can tell them that” he says with a smile. His art took flight after meeting his mentor Mel Brigg during a five month stint in Australia in 2002. Having only seen Dodds seascapes, I was astonished to see his abstract and portrait paintings which demonstrate a remarkable versatility. His preferred medium is oils.
Dodds stunning wavescapes can be found at the St Francis Brew Pub in St Francis Bay.
A pint of Wildside, some Jack Johnson tunes and a Dodds Blom seascape provide all the sensory chill you need at the end of a hectic day. For commissions, or to view different styles of his work you can contact the artist directly on 0606347451
Article by by Jacqueline Jorgensen