Coral Crochet

It’s a busy and visual week at the Out the Box festival in Cape Town. I’m enjoying seeing loads of theatre crammed into this first week of Spring.

The festival has a strong ‘green/ec0/planet friendly’ contingent this year & I was delighted to come across this crocheted coral wall at the Magnet Theatre.

It’s called the Woodstock Art Reef Project, a satellite project connected to the worldwide Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef Project. ” a woolly celebration of the intersection of higher geometry and feminine handicraft, and a testimony to the disappearing wonders of the marine world.”

It’s voluntary and it’s gorgeous!  If you would like to be an eco-warrior with a crochet needle, you can find out more about the Cape Town group here.


The Fugard Theatre

If you haven’t been to The Fugard Theatre yet, there is a treat in store for you, and if you have, it may be one of your favourite new places, as it is mine!

The theatre is comprised of the Congregational Church Hall on Buitenkant street (1860) and the Sacks Futeran building, a well known home for textiles from the days of District 6. Would you like a tour?

I have been doing a number of shoots of theatre productions over the last year, but this was my first opportunity to shoot the building itself, and what a building! I have a little crush….

Let’s take a little walk upstairs

There is the rehearsal room on your left…

What about a peek into the dressing room?

The theatre hosted the international touring production of Waiting for Godot in 2010 and here some of the stars’ signatures grace the walls, I’m sure they will fill up quickly. Impressed yet? But you haven’t seen the roof!

Tap tap, ‘scuse me, look behind you!

Ahem, yes… that is THAT mountain

Hope you enjoyed the tour and it entices to go and see some great theatre. Go to to see what is on stage at the moment.

Oooh! Papercut…

Although I don’t do much of it myself, I am always impressed and inspired by images or sculptures made solely from cutting and folding paper.

Check out some of the beauties!

by Peter Callesen, Denmark

Kako Ueda, New York

Heather Moore, Cape Town

Andreas Kocks, Germany

Hina Aoyama, Japan

Mia Pearlman, NYC

Those paper doll chains don’t seem very impressive anymore, do they?

Postcards from Cape Town

34 days until the world comes to South Africa to celebrate in the name of football. I’ve always been very proud of my country and especially my most beautiful hometown, Cape Town.  I gained more perspective on our unique cultures, diversities, spirit and beauty when I had the opportunity to live in the UK for a few years. Since I’ve returned, I’ve been inspired to create some fun illustrations of the places in Cape Town we are all such fans of.

Chakalaka Designs - Image © Jesse Kramer

They are currently being sold as postcards in various art & bookshops in the city and this morning I opened the paper to find an article by Antjie Krog, acclaimed author and poet, comparing an original representation of the Cape in 1777 to my postcard of 2010!

Here are some excerpts from her article:

‘The Vendors at the traffic light crossing towards Cavendish Square were the first to see the economic potential of visualizing Cape Town’s soccer stadium.

But it was only when the first postcard appeared that it hit one between the eyes: both the postcard and the vendor paintings made use of the old and first colonial visualizations of what later grew into a city.

In one of the earliest engravings (1777), titled Prospect of the Cape of Good Hope, several elements were being enlarged or reduced, confirming that maps, drawings and paintings of places are never meant to be accurate. Things are manipulated to symbolize something.  In this engraving it was “prospects”!

The lively postcard, similarly, had been drawn from the same position, albeit more elevated. The sailing vessel has become a yacht. The mountain is tamed into its friendly linked-into-one, famous, flat cliché embracing a jumble of cheerful First World architecture.

Domination of the Cape is complete: people walk on the mountain and hang glide from its cliffs. The sky has a sunny sun, the sea is domesticated to a pollution-ed grey housing whales and foamy boat wakes.

Once again, imagination is used to try and rationalize a link between the stadium and the experiences of Capetonians living in a much divided city. Once again we do it from the outside looking in and we see ourselves all mixed and happy in the “prospects” of WC2010.’

Written by Antjie Krog

Cape Times,   7 May 2010

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Postcards are currently stocked at Heartworks (Gardens & Biscuit Mill); Wordsworth (Gardens Centre); Mandela Rhodes Place Rainbow Experience; Balletique; The Book Lounge

All images © Jesse Kramer