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Mother and Child by Toby Megaw

Toby Megaw (1965-)

Mother and Child

Die moeder as versorger. Hierdie portret van ‘n vrou en haar baba is van die Megaws se familieplaas naby Knysna. Sy verbeeld die onbaatsugtige liefde wat aan familie vir wie ons omgee, bewys word.


The mother as nurturer. Portrait of a woman and her baby from the Megaw’s family farm inland from Knysna. She imbodies the constant love and caring bestowed upon family and the people we care for.

“As a sculptor I challenge myself to take the inert substance of clay, cold and still, and imbue it with life. To engage with it, be sensitive to it, allow it to find a meaningful and real expressive form. This might be still, quiet, soulful, or maybe robust, rugged and full of vigour. I work to express our humanity through physique, stance and subtle gesture; from a bent old woman, with her life experience speaking through the angles of her neck and back, to the sprightly energy of a young child, lively, pert and full of budding vitality. Shaping the clay with simple wooden batons, I strive to suggest rather than define. Sometimes this calls for determination, mustering everything to transform the clay; at other times my work is meditative. On another level, I explore how shapes and volumes relate to each other and where the lines flow through a piece. My hope is that if at all successful, my pieces will give the viewer a sense of the essential; for a moment bring them closer to the core of life” – Toby Megaw

Toby Megaw was born in 1965 and grew up first in Johannesburg and then Cape Town. In his early thirties, after some years as a drama and English teacher, he joined his father, Theo Megaw on the family farm inland from Knysna. Here he spent fifteen years living very simply off the grid, learning from his sculptor father. The rugged mountainous terrain, with its solid three-dimensional honesty and integrity had a profound influence on shaping him as a sculptor. He sculpts in raw clay, dug from beside the farm dam. His work is cast in bronze. He now lives and works in Muizenberg, a seaside suburb of Cape Town, with his wife, a professional musician, and their two young children.

Toby Megaw’s work is exhibited by Read Contemporary galleries. His work is sought after by local and international collectors. The four-metre-high Wine Bearer at La Motte Wine Estate, Franschhoek, is his biggest work to date.

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