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Top Billing takes a tour of the place Paula van Coller calls home
Top Billing visits the artistic haven that is Paula van Coller's Stellenbosch home
Artist Paula Van Coller makes sense of her life through plants. When she and her husband Dr. Rikus Louw bought their Bauhaus style winelands home in Stellenbosch, she did what she’s always loved doing – and began planting.
Paula believes the way flowers or bulbs must adapt to summer or winter is similar to how we respond to happiness or sadness – and her beautiful paintings reflect this in a way that words never could.
When they first moved into the home some adjustments had to be made, but they were all for keeping the spiral staircase and the building’s late, modern design. That said, space had to be created for a studio and more.
Her studio is on the west side of the house with a view of a huge oak tree and the street outside. It is a space big enough to work on at least four paintings at once, an artist’s dream. The theme is set by the colourful, Scandinavian style lounge but it’s the art, with its spring theme, which gives this room such life.
The bedroom is equally special, and as you walk in the Twin Peaks of The Jonkershoek are there to greet you with a breath-taking view.
Paula’s love for plants is reflected not only in her art but also in her home.
Paula’s art reflects elements of her family life, and in her studio a blossom which turns into fruit can represent her grandmother who used to make jam from fruit.
Her focus on growth has come to stand for motherhood of her twin boys Ben and Walt as well as her journey as a wife.
Her husband Rikus Louw, a specialists physician with a love of creativity, has been exposed to the arts from a young age when his mother made jewellery and painted, and his father made striking iron sculptures. Since meeting when she was studying fine art and he was doing medicine, this couple have renovated their fair share of properties - but it feels as if the roots they’ve put down here are for good. Or for a good while, at least.