It was an uncharacteristically clear evening when Entrepreneurs’ Organisation members descended on internationally acclaimed artist Paul Du Toit’s Studio in Hout Bay; for Forum One’s ITB (in-the-boardroom) offering.
The event gave EO members an intimate look into the world of this innovative force known as ‘Planet Paul’. Having worked with icons such as REM’s Michael Stipe, Nobel Laureate Salmon Rushdie, and our very own Madiba, the evening was bound to bring a sharing of experiences unlike any other.
So what is it about the work of Paul du Toit that has brought this once computer programmer such unprecedented international success? Du Toit hints at his passion, his habit of three hours sleep a night and his remarkable wife and manager, Lorette du Toit, as some of the most influential factors. But it becomes clear, as he guides the EO members around the sculptress he is in the process of finishing for his upcoming exhibition, that it is his unique brand of creativity that has set him apart from other artists; and drawn the attention of galleries inParis,New yorkand Sydney.
Having recently survived a pernicious cancer; (an undoubted all-time low), while establishing a New York studio (an all-time high), it is clear that du Toit is unbound by the challenges life throws at him. It is perhaps this combination of determination and motivation that have brought him to where he is, and it is certainly this varied and vibrant life that was on show for all the EO members that attended the event.
A first-hand account of du Toit’s creative process, and a tour of his upcoming collection of sculptures, gave EO members a chance to experience what it must be like to be an inhabitant of ‘Planet Paul’. Du Toit explained how his latest technique for building these enormous hominids was adapted from a British Navy technique for building protective structures. By making use of quick drying cement canvases, du Toit first shaped and then set the concrete, bringing to life these alien-like beings.
Later, du Toit shared how he had forged his own path in the art world. Coming from a background of IT training he attended a few night school lessons to bolster his technique, but quickly realised his time was better spent experimenting in his studio. It was fitting that the evening came to a close with a riotous Q & A in amongst his paint brushes and canvases, sculptures and of course the iconic plaster cast of Madiba’s hand.
EO has made outstanding strides towards leveraging worldwide entrepreneurial talent. Offering transformative experiences and an invaluable peer network, the future is certainly bright for the organisation and its membership. For more information visit www.eonetwork.org.