Collection: Sue Dickinson

Sue Dickinson (1958-2019) was one of South Africa's foremost wildlife watercolor artists. Her unique artworks found their way into private collections worldwide, including those of South Africa's first democratically elected president, Nelson Mandela, and Britain's Queen Elizabeth II.

Born in KwaZulu-Natal in 1958, Dickinson studied Fine Art at the University of the Witwatersrand before launching her graphic design studio. In 1994, she started painting full- time and was soon considered one of her generation's best wildlife artists.

Her optimism about and celebration of all things African led to her being asked to create artwork for several South African postage stamps, including airmail tags commemorating the discovery of Thulamela, the world-famous archaeological site in the Kruger National Park. Dickinson's style was unique as a wildlife artist: her perspective was fixed on the animal, using a white background to focus the viewer's eye on the subject.

Her preferred painting medium was watercolor on paper, widely acknowledged by artists as the most difficult. "There is no room for error," she said. "Once it is on the paper, it is almost impossible to remove, so I work carefully and accurately. I'm not attempting to reproduce reality, so I want to work fairly loosely."

Dickinson exhibited her artwork extensively in South African art galleries, Italy, France, the UK, and the USA. She received the Award of Excellence from the Society of Animal Artists in 2007 and was a judge for the International Watercolour Society.