Claire Gunn
Vernazza Buildings

In Love With Beauty – Meet Claire Gunn

Cape Town-based creative Claire Gunn has a serious passion for art. And we are obsessed with her unending talent. 

Claire GunnFrom watercolour paintings to food and portrait photography, Claire Gunn creates a diverse and rich body of work. In fact, she feels as though she embodies multiple artists as such a broad range of subjects inspires her. A creative through-and-through, Claire uses art as a daily practice to explore her world.

With a love for visual storytelling, she uses her work to explore the abstract and philosophical elements of the human experience. She paints things that spark joy for her — from landscapes and cityscapes to portraits and street scenes. The result is a collection of work that engages with a broad range of subjects. “I go through stages where I have to paint the ocean and pastel clouds, and then I am immediately urged to draw a bright red pattern with cranes and tiny perfect line details while dreaming of painting mountains at sunrise or still lake waters,” she says. “I think I have ten artists occupying my consciousness that all want a piece of the physical action on Earth, which is exactly why my art can come across as being from different artists.”

Claire Gunn
Still Waters (left) and Lockdown in Venice (right)
Claire Gunn
Thola in Bloom

For Claire, art provides a real sense of pleasure. “What inspires me is escapism into what keeps us in a space of joy, so we don’t get sucked down into the waves of despair that may cause a downward spiral if we take this life and its challenges too seriously,” she says. “Lighten up. Art helps.” Her home in Durbanville also serves as a source of inspiration for much of her work. She can create while surrounded by hills and vineyards that change with the seasons — these seasonal shifts influence her work and the visual stories she creates.

Claire Gunn

Claire works in various mediums and creates illustrations, drawings and paintings in both watercolour and acrylic. She also creates digital paintings, as well as fine art photography. The work that she identifies with most is her collection of urban sketches that depict Italian cities and towns — the pieces are beautifully detailed and rich in colour. The collection was inspired by her obsession with Italy and her fond memories of her trip a few years ago.