Kate Schärf was born in Pietermaritzburg, KZN in 1993. In 2013 she relocated to the small farming town of Tulbagh in the Western Cape. That same year, she completed a Foundation course at Whitecliffe College of Art and Design in New Zealand. She began her BA Fine Arts Degree at Stellenbosch University in 2015, graduating in 2018. She is currently studying her Masters at the same university.


Her work is inspired by gardens and plants, which for her, are evocative of personal and historical meaning; of location, settlement, belonging and growth. Her interests lie in the relationship between plants and human endeavor. Most importantly, gardens and plants imply a sense of connection or association with things, people, experiences and feelings, as can be seen in much literary fiction where gardens can function metaphorically. 

By drawing intuitively, Kate translates “foliage-scapes” of her immediate environment into two-dimensional works, which constantly change, grow and evolve until the confines of the page can no longer allow it.

In a fast-paced world, one often forgets to admire the small things; the shapes of the leaves; the connection of the one stem to the next. Her work attempts to convey the connected-ness of life and death; of basic things on this earth that make it home and what makes us human. This body of work aims to inspire and invite the viewer into a world of lush plants, whilst provoking thought into how different another world may look, and how our own world may be understood. The work seeks to immerse the viewer in deep thought and wonder.