I grew up under apartheid in Vanderbijlpark (Gauteng, South Africa). I was born Nicolé Hoffmann on the 28th of February 1981 and currently live in Durban (KwaZulu Natal, South Africa). I married Gervais Francois Maurel on the 26th of July 2008. He is a hybrid. His father is Mauritian and his mother Afrikaans. We had our first and only daughter, Roselee Maurel, on the 20th of October 2011.
Vanderbijlpark was predominantly Afrikaans. Black and Indian people had to live within their given areas. As a little girl, I was always part of a family, culture, group and volk. I was educated at an Afrikaans primary and high school. When I was twenty one years old I moved to Durban. As a child I never had the opportunity to make friends with or get to know, other races and cultures. I lived in a cocoon where only white Afrikaners existed. It was, and still to a degree is, unacceptable to mingle with other races within the Afrikaner home.
I matriculated at Transvalia High School in 1999 with Art, Biology, History, Typing, Afrikaans first language and English second language as subjects. As a child I was already particularly interested in subjects such as music, history and art. I was fascinated with the history of South Africa and history of art. I enjoyed learning about concepts and symbolism.
After matriculating, I studied Fine Arts at the Vaal University of Technology for one year and started working after that due to financial difficulties. It was very difficult to come to terms with a new reality after having a privileged childhood. This period of working helped me gain communication, computer, sales, reception and administrative skills. I registered for second year Fine Arts at Durban University of Technology in 2008 and have been studying full time ever since.
I was the top B Tech student in my class in 2011 and won the 2011 Emma Smith Art Scholarship. I was selected as a top 100 finalist in 2011 for the Sasol Signatures competition and my work was exhibited at the Pretoria Art Museum. In 2012 I was selected as a top one hundred finalist for the Absa Le Atelier competition and my work was exhibited at the Absa Art Gallery in Johannesburg and at the Aardklop festival in Potchefstroom in 2012.
Exhibitions at the KZNSA
Aberdeen to Durban