I draw my inspiration from life and the energy surrounding it. People close to me inspire me, the African skies lights up my heart, the colours of nature talks to me and flowers excite me. Through all of this, I draw my motivation to paint.
I am a Self-Thought Artist, and my first painting was a portrait of Mandela. As I looked at this painting, I realised my talent. I felt rediscovered, and I was so excited! I knew this was it. I have officially found my calling after struggling to make ends meet as a single mother to 3 children. Art chose me, I did not choose art.
I decided to sign my portrait with “Mo Nique” as it has a ring to it, sounds like Renoir, Degas, Monet – “Mo Nique”. This proud moment, my first signing, will forever stay with me.
After this I started working on some landscapes of the Italian Winelands, Female Figures, Nudes, Ballerinas and Flowers to try and determine my style.
I very soon started painting my flower paintings and they were becoming more and more popular, and most of my bouquet paintings sold as I would finish them. It was like the flowers were inside of me, it came with such ease to paint them, I would literally paint them out of my imagination, sunflowers, lilies, lysianthus, irises. They all just came to me and I felt so blessed to be able to paint them.
The colours for roses are very symbolic; red roses symbolise love and romance. PINK (my favourite) is gratitude, admiration and joy. Orange roses symbolise enthusiasm and passion. White roses symbolise Purity and holiness. So put all of those in together then you pretty much have a very exciting and powerful painting!
My favourite inspirational quotes are: “I paint flowers so they will not die” – Frida Kahlo & “Action is the foundational key to all success” – Pablo Picasso.
I am a free spirit. And I love being my unique self. Therefore, I love to have my art be purely me. I think my paintings have their own soul. They portray my passion and love for life and femininity. I love my paintings and have an intense feeling of gratitude when I look at them, the talent I received from God that ultimately saved my life. That’s how I feel.
I love to experiment with my brush and palette knife. I am not afraid to try out a variety of styles and techniques and mainly paint using oil paint. The softness, transparency of the paint and the way the different colours mix is what fascinates me which allows me to paint with bold and self-assured brushstrokes
As I am a South-African Artist with a Dutch Heritage, my drive is very strong! From the start, I had a mission, a passion and a deep longing to become independent from my ex-husband in order to support my children and become a successful artist.
With many days of tears flowing, I knew that, unless I persevere and make the most of each day and paint, there was no other way I was going to achieve my independence and fulfil my dreams.
It was there where I made the decision that it was inevitable, and that I will achieve what I want.
I WILL PAINT AND I WILL SELL!
This became my daily affirmation. I’ve always said, if you believe, and do wat you are good at, never give up, it is inevitable that you will become successful!
I would like to be an inspiration to other single moms and all women. Every time you see one of my portraits, feel the positive influence, feel the encouragement. Don’t allow yourself to give up and follow your passion in life, create your future!
Remember, dreams do come true! I am now a successful artist and own my own studio in the Cape Winelands, my paintings have become very popular and are selling internationally allowing me to care of myself and my children.
The next step is working towards the opportunity to have a solo exhibition where I can showcase all my ladies and flowers. It is something I have visualised for many years and believe it will happen soon.
My work can be viewed online at my website and social media pages. Also on exhibit at various galleries throughout South Africa as well as at Atelier Louis in Belgium.
I resonate with Frida Kahlo,
“I hope the leaving is joyful and I hope never to return.” - Frida
“I paint flowers so they will not die.” - Frida
Visit Monique's Studio
Visitations to Monique's art studio can be made by appointment only