This month an incredible collection of South African design and art is coming to New York, for The Salon Art + Design Fair from November 8-12. Curated by Southern Guild, a platform that specializes in collectible African design at international design fairs, art weeks and auctions, the presentation promises to showcase a new kind of African luxury.
According to Trevyn McGowan, the co-founder of Southern Guild. ‘It’s a visceral and immersive body of work drawn from 21 South African artists who offer insights into a world that is stirring and tactile, familiar yet strange,’ she explains. ‘Part of what makes our work so unique is that it is complex and divergent, so there’s no neat categorization or overarching identity.’ As a result, each of the artists – chosen from both established and emerging designers in the fields of furniture, lighting, ceramics and sculpture – draw from their personal histories, cultural heritage, and indigenous traditions to create work that is unique and contemporary.
Established artists include the likes of Gregor Jenkin, South Africa’s foremost furniture designer who has pieces in the permanent collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Modern Art; and Porky Hefer, fresh from a sell-out success at Design Miami/Basel where he created a range of sculptures to benefit the Leonardo di Caprio Foundation. Similarly, the work of husband-and-wife team Adriaan Hugo and Katy Taplin of Dokter and Misses, a multi-disciplinary product design company will be shown; as will that of Andile Dyalvane, a renowned ceramicist. Exciting new talents will feature alongside the more established designers such as Richard Mnisi, an internationally acclaimed fashion designer who will showcase his debut furniture collection, as will Zizipho Poswa, who makes powerful ceramics that speak to the artist’s heritage as a Xhosa woman in a modern world – to name but a few.
Southern Guild celebrates its 10th anniversary this year and is the only gallery to represent South African collectible design. Founded by Julian and Trevyn McGowan, partners in life and work, the McGowan’s are champions of collectible African design and a tour de force creatively. In 2003 they returned to South Africa from London to start SOURCE, an agency that exports South African design. It was met with great success and in 2012 they started Southern Guild, a related platform that promotes collectible local design abroad at international design fairs, art weeks, and auctions. This was followed two years later by Guild, Africa’s first international design fair that sought to bring some of the world’s leading design galleries and institutions to exhibit alongside local counterparts in Cape Town. Their prolific success has seen them included in USA Art + Auction magazine’s ‘POWER 100’ list of the most influential players in the global art world.
If you’re New York-based and interested in limited-edition African art and collectibles, this is the event for you. Should you want to delve deeper into the South African art and design world ROAR AFRICA has intimate relationships and insider access, like no other and can arrange especially curated experiences designed just for you and your interests while in South Africa. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.