Widely revered for his overwhelming heads and monumental sculptures, evoking themes of suffering, reconciliation, glory, and sublimation, his works grace public and private collections countrywide and internationally.
An inspiring raconteur, Anton enjoys relating tales of his struggles as a young artist. The secret to his success could be attributed to his courage and determination to forge ahead in the face of great difficulty.
Some observers have noted that this is why so many of his pieces, even the most abstract ones, manage to communicate powerfully and emotionally and why his work is possessed of a raw, earthy power that feels innately African. His body of work comprises towering human figures, nudes, impressive heads, masks, hands, angels, floating and stretching figures, warriors as well as abstract works, using mostly steel, metal, fiberglass, and bronze.
Anton likes to imbue his work with an illusion of movement or gesture, bodies curling up or limbs reaching out to the onlooker, inspirational “action figures” projecting tremendous emotion, a call to movement. He works with metals and stones, also creating a unique iron and polymer cast mixture, which combines metal with several other mediums.
Anton Smit spends and works the first three months of the year in his Cape studios in Strand and for the rest of the year at the Anton Smit Art Gallery & Sculpture Park at Bronkhorstspruit Dam, where he oversees a dedicated workforce of 16 people. “ We are like family.”
Anton Smit in his creative prime is a force to be reckoned with.
1970: First prize in the nationwide Bible Year Competition.
1979: First prize in New Signatures Competition, SA Association of Arts, Pretoria
1982: Artist of the month, Pretoria Art Museum.
1987: One-man exhibition, Beuster-Skolimowski Gallery.
1989: One-man exhibition, South African Association of Arts (SAAA).
1991: Exhibitions in Rome and Milan Italy.International exhibition of Two Worlds in Spoletto, Italy.
1992: Large sculptures commissioned by BMW Head Office Johannesburg.
1993: One-man exhibition at Sweeguan Art Gallery, Singapore.
1994: One-man exhibition at Omni Gallery, New York. Exhibition at the inauguration of President Nelson Mandela at the Presidency. Exhibition in Germany, Bonn, Wolfsburg.
1998: Exhibition at the South African Embassy, Bonn. One-man exhibition Artfolio Gallery, Singapore.
1999: Exhibition at the Inter Art Galerie Reich, KoIn. 2001: Exhibition Hamburg, Germany.
Works purchased by Anton Rupert for the Rembrandt Foundation.
2004: Exhibition Amsterdam
2007: Public Commission : National Library of Tswane / Pta
2008: “Revelations Wall “- Exhibition / Sculpture Park “Relate “-Platform on 18th, Pretoria /
2009: “No second death “Exhibition, Wine Estate / Franschoek – Grande Provence
Delaire Wine Estate Stellenbosch – main artist
2010 “Facet” Exhibition/ Anton Smit Sculpture Park & Gallery Exhibition Grande Provence
Franschoek / “Angels” “Poetry “ Exhibition Charity / St Lorient / PTA
2011 “Transitions “ Exhibition Anton Smit Sculpture Park
2012 “Transcendental Head “– public sculpture on the R25 – Symbol of the New South Africa
2013 “Metal Work” – Public Art in Stellenbosch II
2014 “Art Affair “ – Saxon Hotel Jhb Cool Capital participation “Spirit of Tswane “ Public sculpture for Menlyn Main precinct “In Retrospect” – Stephan Welz
2015 “Smit & Smit” – Imibala Gallery “Cross section exhibition” – Jan Royce Gallery, Cape Town “In Retrospect” – Menlyn Boutique Hotel, Pretoria
2016 “Colossal” Australian Bronze – Australia “Public Sculpture Exhibition” Menlyn Maine – Pretoria Exhibition – Puerto-Rico Exhibition – Miami
“Charity Auction” MAD Foundation – Sculpture (Spiritus Mundi) sold for R120 000 Pendoring Awards
2017 “7m Faith” Stream Conference – Spier Wine Farm – Stellenbosch Public Sculpture Exhibition –
Capital Hotel – Menlyn Maine – Pretoria
“Between the shadow and the soul” – Exhibition – Imibala – Somerset-West “Brick Face” – Imibala Charity – Community Upliftment Project
“Charity Auction” MAD Foundation Sculptures (Head of a Young Boy & Head of a Young Girl) sold for R100 000 each. “Smit & Smit Collaboration” – Cape Wine Auction – Sculpture sold for R1,200,000.
“Rite of Passage” Exhibition – Jan Royce – Cape Town – South Africa
Public Sculpture Exhibition – Melrose Arch – Johannesburg – South Africa
Durban “Essence” Expo Exhibition – Durban – South Africa
Grande Provence Exhibition – Walking Man – Franschhoek – South Africa
2018 “Submerge” Exhibition – Imibala Gallery – Somerset West, Cape Town
2019 "Colossal" Exhibition - Uitstalling - Genk, Belgium