African Design-no need to look past our borders

Vibrant street art. Exclusive upcycled products. Cutting edge design.

Three fascinating styles, three zesty designers, three wonderful stories.

Enthralling natural beauty combined with abundant local materials, South Africa inspires and provides three local artists with the resources and motivation to turn their unique craftsmanship and raw talent into one of a kind creations and breath-taking works of art.

 

Douglas Chapeta

Born 1979 in Zimbabwe,through rural education and training, this young man learned and developed skills of turning basic materials into beautiful products from beads and wire. Douglas used his artists eye and inspirations from African surroundings to create sought after products in order to support this nine siblings. In 2010 with the arrival of the Soccer World Cup in South Africa, Douglas’ imaginative designs were discovered and used in the Moses Mabida stadium. In 2011 at a local flea market, his unusual creations and artistries were spotted by a local designer and Douglas was introduced to the Nandos Projects team. From crafted mirrors, beaded pendants and decorative pieces his work can be seen in Nandos stores across the country.

“Since others have helped me to be where I am I feel it is my duty to help others as well.” Nineteen years after his humble beginnings, Douglas Chapeta Designs continues with its craftsmanship but is also working within the community to share his knowledge and talents; he teaches young people that free skills can be used to generate an income and help them build a better life for themselves and their family.

 

Portable Gallery

Based in Johannesburg, this inventive and distinctive designer uses his one of a kind imagination and verve to create individual pieces of furniture and decor items. Pierre Terblanche the hands and heart behind the company, carefully crafts each artwork, preserving its sombre story, age and antiquity in his finished products. In his exclusive studio, Pierre brings the unexpected to life, upcycling items that have a remarkable history and early beginning. Singular pieces are made and remoulded with great detail; special consideration is applied to the form, shape and colour of each and every creation.

“Each piece isn’t only aesthetically pleasing and visually interesting but also has its own tale to tell about its origin.” Portable Gallery bring the old, even ancient into a new world, each artwork bespoke and each story authentic. Natural, rustic and well conserved, the beauties of Pierre’s workings are timeless and rich in culture. Alive with creativity and defined technical skills Portable Gallery is a welcomed entity that marries the past, present and future.

 

Clarisse Design

Xavier Clarisse, a colorful french sculptor now living and breathing Africa, is faithfully pushing the boundaries with daring designs and products. Through his widespread travels, collaboration with other artists and freelance design work, Xavier has developed a novel yet comprehensive set of skills. Balancing ambition and flair, Clarisse Design makes use of cutting edge technology and excellent materials to produce a range of sculptures, furniture and original works.

“We do not compromise on the quality of our materials used;our objective is to produce pieces that survive fashion and and time.” Constantly drawing on motivation from the past as well as looking forward, this artist lives to experiment with advanced concepts and explore the fresh resources South Africa had to offer. Also aiming to pass on his expertise, create employment and develop the manual skills of other craftsmen, we can expect to see many more lavish and diverse design works coming out of Africa. Modern yet honest, persistent yet imaginative, Xaviers workings and evolving talents are certainly something of the future.

 

Douglas, Pierre and Xavier, although varied in their methodology, design and originality, they are all fused together and draw on one collective entity; South Africa. Inspiring splendour, zealous culture and creativity all form part of the plentiful offerings of Africa. Within the borders of our country we have resources,people and influences that are true, rare and captivating. Think innovative design, think authentic artistry, think South Africa.