Richard Penn

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(19**-) Animator, teacher and artist



Studied at the University of the Witwatersrand, completing an honours degree (majoring in painting) in 1998, and a Masters Degree in Fine Arts (with distinction) in 200*.


Primarily an artist, he has had four solo exhibitions, and has exhibited in numerous group shows nationally and internationally, and is represented in private, corporate and academic collections throughout South Africa.

Contribution to SA theatre, film, media and/or performance

After completing his honours degree, he developed and taught an animation course for 1st, 2nd and 3rd years in the Fine Arts Department at Wits University. Besides producing his own, he has worked for various institutions and projects. In 2000 he collected and compiled a two-hour animation programme for the Klein Karoo National Arts Festival and Urban Futures.

In 2002 he was appointed Head of Animation at AFDA Johannesburg (The South African School for Motion Picture Medium and Live Performance) and maintained that position until 2009. In 2007 he accepted the position of Vice-Principal of the Learning Department at AFDA, but resigned from that position in 2008 to complete his Masters degree and concentrate on his career as an artist.

In 2009 he and his wife Robyn Penn started STRANGE Blue Duck, a company through which he facilitates introductory animation courses for school learners and creative enrichment workshops for corporates. He has co-animated and co-directed two short films with Mocke Jansen van Veuren, and has directed and animated three short films of his own.

Awards, etc

While still a student, he was awarded third place in the PPC Young Concrete Sculptor Award (1997) and, in the years leading up to 2004, Richard was a finalist in the ABSA Atelier, the Kempton Park Art Competition and The Sasol New Signatures Art Competition. In 2004 he was awarded the overall winner’s prize in The Sasol New Signatures Art Competition and in 2006 he was awarded a special prize for the Everard Read Art Award.


The Penn's Pop Up Art Shop on Sat 8 Mar from 10am at Connect on 4th in Linden (Press release: The Famous Idea [], 6 March 2014)

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