‘Confidant’ by Joni-Leigh Doran.

‘Confidant’ by Joni-Leigh Doran. Image: Supplied

Cognisance: An exhibition of equine paintings by Joni-Leigh Doran

You can see Joni-Leigh Doran’s exhibition – which highlights the relationship between horses and humans – at La Galleria in the new year.

‘Confidant’ by Joni-Leigh Doran.

‘Confidant’ by Joni-Leigh Doran. Image: Supplied

Capetonian, Joni-Leigh Doran’s exhibition of equine paintings will be displayed at La Galleria in McGregor in the new year.

Joni-Leigh Doran | equine paintings

Joni-Leigh Doran resides in McGregor in the Western Cape and works predominantly in the traditional medium of oil paint on canvas and linen.

The complex relationship between horses and humans

This particular body of work highlights the enduring but complex relationship between horses and humans.

In these paintings, the spectral representation of the horse presents a species with a long and interconnected relationship with humans, sometimes to the point of holy divinity.

According to a press release, the horse’s long service to humanity, and their deep awareness and understanding of a species other than themselves, is one we humans can only aspire to and yet…humans have, since the beginning, subjected billions of horses to untold horrors and murderous exploitation.

The spirit of horses

The ghostlike form of various horses in these paintings is both a testament to those that have suffered and died as well as our sanctification of them and our admiration of their deep powers of intuition and knowledge that rises far beyond the cognitive abilities of our own species.

“These paintings are an enquiry into the spirit of the horse, and the deep and historical interconnectedness between us and them. The ephemeral portrayal of them in these works accentuates the opposing circumstances that horses currently face in cohabitation with humans – transcendence and tribulation,” said Doran.

These paintings are Doran`s attempt to honour the horses she has known and loved.

They all depict horses that she has known personally.

Exhibitions details

  • La Galleria, McGregor Art Exhibition
  • 8 January 2022 to 13 February 2022

This short, inspirational video shares more of her thoughts about the creative process: