In the quest for coin designs that would possess all the required elements, qualities and characteristics to correctly express the unifying message of the SA25 Commemorative Coin Range, it was clear that the artists chosen would have to reflect the rich diversity of South African culture, artistry and design. All respected in their fields of expertise, each artist was honoured by the challenge and has designed an objet d’art that we are privileged to utilise in remembrance of the 25 years of constitutional democracy we have attained.
Durban-based artist and reverse typographer, Garth Walker, whose interest lies in asking “what makes me African – and what does that look like?” got his start as a graphic designer in the mid-1970s. Today, he is the proud founder of two established design studios and his work is represented in esteemed collections, galleries, universities and libraries across the globe - from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to The Smithsonian. In 1995 he self-published his experimental studio magazine iJusi, and he continues to publish work in numerous books and magazines today. Walker is a member of Alliance Graphique Internationale, British D&AD and a Life Member of The Type Directors Club (NY).
Being of San descent, Lady Skollie’s art education began when her mother enrolled her in the Frank Joubert Art Centre. Although classically trained, Skollie quickly deviated from the traditional art scene and took to promoting her work via social media.
Presently, Lady Skollie uses ink, watercolour and crayon to defy the taboo and talk openly about issues of sex, pleasure, consent, human connection, violence, and abuse. As both an artist and an activist, her work carries the unmistakable tenors of both the bold and vulnerable. Her aim in her work is to express the joy and darkness of the erotic and the duality of human experience, interwoven with her identity politics.
A born and bred Pretorian, Maaike Bakker wasted no time in completing her bachelors and masters degrees in the field of visual arts soon after matriculating. With her qualifications, Bakker soon progressed to practising as a visual artist, curator, illustrator and esteemed educator in the South African creative industry.
Bakker focuses most of her creative expertise on producing and exhibiting her work both locally and abroad. In addition, she has endeavoured to get involved in the artistic upbringing of the next generation by lecturing at The Open Window - an institution positioned in the field of creative education. Bakker is represented by Kalashnikovv Gallery JHB, and also runs an arts project space, NO END Contemporary, with gallery partners Dalene Victor-Meyer and Jayne Crawshay-Hall.
Neo Mahlangu is a Johannesburg-based fine artist whose striking body of work has been created using digital illustrations and charcoal, often experimenting with social media as an additional medium. She aims to create work that inspires self-reflection and introspection with regards to human interaction.
Mahlangu has taken part in numerous group exhibitions and has received several accolades. She was recognised as one of the Design Indaba’s Emerging Creatives for 2018; was listed as one of the top ten ‘Young Gauteng’ creatives by 100% Design South Africa; was listed by Between 10and5 as one of the top 40 creatives under 30 to watch; and was a finalist for the Cassirer Welz Award in 2017.
Johannesburg resident, Peter Mammes began drawing as a young child and matriculated in 2004 from the National School of the Arts in Braamfontein. As a young artist, he always expressed an interest in the macabre and absurd. Mammes may work for several months at a time in different locations in order to assimilate the culture and surroundings of a particular society - first in Moscow, Russia and more recently in Varanasi, India.
He currently uses his artwork to pose questions about the construction of the narratives of power and authority. His inspiration focuses on the intersection of individual and national identity and the suppression and celebration of the ugly and unacceptable.
Knayles is a Johannesburg-based artist with a focus far removed from classic art - he expresses himself in the art of graffiti and tattooing. Making his career debut as a graffiti artist, Knayles has created and curated some of the most iconic street murals in the city of Johannesburg and has now cemented his place as a pioneer of the local graffiti movement.
Over the last ten years of his career, Knayles was introduced to the art of tattooing and has since established himself as one of South Africa’s leading tattoo artists. He takes his inspiration from his surroundings, the city streets, popular culture, day-to-day interactions, and he always strives to show the lighter side of these subjects.
East London-born Gaylard’s design aesthetic is expressed in constrained, meticulous and precise fine-line drawings. Having always been fascinated by the intricacies of design and construction, Gaylard graduated with a masters degree in architecture from the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University and lived and worked in London and Paris. In 2013, Gaylard launched Blank Ink Design - a design studio which provides a vehicle for the creation of his architectural drawings inspired by local and international buildings. These drawings have been featured in leading SA magazines, exhibitions and the prestigious AKAA fair in Paris and have been acquired by private as well as well-known collectors such as the Oppenheimer’s Brenthurst Library.