MEET THE MAKERS.
SA has a rich heritage of craftsmanship and the art of craft is having a serious moment. Uno de Waal, founder of Between 10and5, shares his pick of who and what’s hot right now.
'Craft has - until now - typically been seen as a hobby or a specific practice, and not highly desirable. Recent developments have changed that completely and elevated craft to new standards, and we can see a wave of new craftspeople making things again. These objects take the form of interesting art statements, large-scale structures and pieces that say things, or make us think differently. There has been a movement towards making things by hand, and making things excellently, whether it’s a new gin, a rug, ceramics or a wooden sculpture. Here's what's on my radar right now.'
'Nebnikro is a bit of a creative polymath, having been featured on many "emerging creatives" lists at only 20 years young. He makes clothing, bags and beadwork, but what has really caught our eye is his ceramic work.'
'Now in its fifth year, the PPC Imaginarium is a yearly competition that celebrates objects created with concrete. Past finalists have included a speaker system, a lamp and a bicycle! With a wide range of entry categories, this contest is one of the best ways to see what’s possible with a medium typically reserved for large-scale industrial pieces.'
'Definitely not new on the scene, and possibly the organisation that can be credited with having done most for local designers on the international stage, Southern Guild is a consistent supporter of the art of craft. Founders Trevyn and Julian McGowan run numerous projects that help establish markets for local product designers.'
Nkuli Mlangeni/The Ninevites
‘Nkuli shot to prominence when her rug won the Design Indaba Most Beautiful Object In South Africa award last year. Nkuli’s designs are not just rugs, they’re storytelling heritage objects, hand-made by skilled craftspeople. She recently collaborated with Trenery and had her own textile exhibition at 99 Juta.’
‘Speaking of… The collab between Local Studio and Dokter and Misses sees a great collection of local makers, all under one roof. The striking pink Braamfontein building is home to some seriously talented furniture-maker tenants and also has pop-up spaces that allow emerging designers to showcase their wares.’