South African sculptor Anton Smit is known for his powerful artwork that centers around themes of reconciliation, glory, and suffering. Whether in a large or small-scale format, Smit's sculptures are a force of nature. Particularly powerful are his bronze sculptures of hands. These overlapping hands form small circles, or, as they are often titled, tornados.
Tornado and Whirlwind are a series of dynamic sculptures that speak to the interconnectedness of us all. It is only through the contribution of all the hands that the circle is made whole. This message is particularly meaningful in these trying times when wars rage, and people often point to our differences rather than our similarities.
Through his sculpture, Smit hopes to draw the viewer into conversation. This is certainly achieved with these hypnotic sculptures, which immediately pull the viewer in. In their stunning simplicity, the pieces ask us to ponder the fact that we are one of many. And that only together can we continue to thrive. This message can be carried over to many different relationships, whether they be interhuman, interspecies, or between humans and the environment.
While Smit's public sculptures can be viewed across Cape Town and Pretoria, as well as in international exhibitions, the best place to view his body of work is at the Anton Smit Sculpture Park. This unique outdoor gallery is located an hour outside of Johannesburg and was created by Smit in 2003. Spread over two and a half acres, the grounds also house Smit's studio, as well as an art gallery and art cafe.