new work by animal farm, south africa new work by animal farm, south africa
jun 02, 2008

new work by animal farm, south africa

the creative consultancy ‘animal farm’ of south africa recently launched several new pieces of furniture at ‘rooms on view’ in johannesburg. designed by porky hefer and warren lewis, the new work is said to be ‘influenced by african life and have some cultural or social commentary to them’.

‘tokoloshe’ bed and bench
‘traditional magic and superstition have always formed an integral part of south africa’s indigenous folktales,
in which the tokoloshe is a significant manifestation. even today many rural and urban nguni peoples,
particularly the zulu and xhosa, still believe in the power of these mischievous and sometimes evil, hairy spirits.
interestingly though, the belief in these water sprites has spread to all cultures in south africa. all over the country,
black south africans would often raise their beds by placing the legs of their beds on paint tins or bricks,
raising their bed up to 3 feet from the ground. it is an almost universal belief, that this was to keep the occupant
of the bed out of reach of the tokoloshe while you sleep. tokoloshe is avaliable in two widths:
bench – 1800mm x 430mm, bed – 1800mm x 800mm steel frame is epoxy coated and avaliable in a variety colours’.

‘silent partner’ chair sculpture
…sits at animal farm’s boardroom table representing their silent/financial backers. it just reminds us they are there
and we’ll have to answer to them at some stage. it’s made from an old chair, polystyrene and silver tape‘.

‘ndebele’ stool
made in collaboration with elizabeth and vincent gwebu, bead workers originally from mpumalanga, now living in
philippi, cape town. these stools are based on the materials, techniques and forms of traditional ndeble dolls.
ndebele art speaks no longer just to the indigenous community, but now serves also as an aesthetic commodity,
an economic "bridge to the 21(st) century" for south african ndebele women artists and their families.
we are witnessing an artistic society of women proceeding through their own cultural aesthetic evolution.
instead of producing more and more traditional dolls that are common in south africa, and whose only function
is a curio or keepsake, we are using tenets of ndebele culture to produce furniture that is relevant/attractive to an
international market with sustainable economic benefits‘.


‘high hopes – big dreams’ crate stools
based on makeshift seating found in most shabeens, barber shops and spaza stalls around south africa,
the wooden crate stool serves as an ode to every African tale voiced from these seats of hope.
‘high hopes – big dreams’ and ‘short courage – tall stories’ are available in a raw, superwood finish as well as
a wide range of colours‘.

animal farm website: http://www.animal-farm.co.za animal farm blog: http://www.animalfarmacy.blogspot.com

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