The first solo exhibition of South African designer Porky Hefer’s unusual work, Monstera Deliciosa, Volume 1, is showing at the Southern Guild Gallery in Capetown. The exhibit features a new selection of the designer’s wild cane and leather-wrapped underwater animal-inspired hanging nest seats.
Porky Hefer’s Monstera Deliciosa
above: the artist reclining in his Dora Esca chair
With the gallery walls painted blue, Hefer has turned it into an underwaterscape with his 6 fantastical chairs.
The pieces in the show, which is sponsored by Woodhead’s leather suppliers in Capetown, highlight local artisinal crafting such as weaving, stitching and splicing of leather and cane. The hanging pieces are suspended by ropes which are spliced in the method traditionally used on yachts, adding to both their strength and beauty.
above: detail of the materials and craftsman on the Crocodylus Eugenie hanging chair
Not many people are doing environmentally inspired pieces of this nature, especially at this scale,’ explains gallery co-founder Julian McGowan. ‘Porky’s work pushes boundaries and perceptions of what art and design are, and ultimately what furniture is and can be.’
Below are all six chairs from the exhibit, including the artist’s sketches.
Fiona Blackfish (killer whale):
Crocodylus Eugenie (crocodile):
Dora Esca (angler fish):
M.Heloise (Manta Ray):
‘No one is playing with these skills in this way,’ explains Porky. ‘People are latching on to technology, but this evolves so quickly that it’s hard to benefit from it, because by the time you master a technological aspect it’s already dead.’
The artist in his Angler (Dora Esca) chair:
The invitation to the show:
Between 10 and 5 has a nice interview with the artist you can read here.
Monstera Deliciosa, Volume I runs from 20 November to 5 February, with a preview opening on 19 November. Southern Guild will be closed from 16 December, and will reopen on 6 January.
Southern Guild Gallery
10 Lewin Street, Woodstock, Cape Town