Magpie Studio was founded by Scott and Shane in Cape Town, in 1999. Shane drives the social interfacing of Magpie, which involves marketing, administration and the running of the gallery in Barrydale, and Scott is Magpie’s mainstay in terms of the creative design process, with his background in fine art and clothing design.
There’s always been a social dimension to the recycling and up-cycling creative work done by the artistic duo who relocated to the Magpie Studio and Gallery space in Barrydale in 2003. “We transform trash into art,” says Shane. “We've literally transformed a large amount of Barrydale's single-use plastic into objects of art and desire!”
While the original mantra of the studio – to produce “decorative handcrafted home fineware” – has, over time, evolved into a reputation for innovative, bespoke lighting creations and installation work with a social lean, as a small enterprise, the studio’s social responsibility is still very much integrated into its daily process.
MEET THE MAKERS
At times it's just been the duo, at other times they’ve collaborated with other artists and groups. Elsabe Scheepers is one of the local artists who has worked with the pair for more than a decade. She’s the proud owner of a new RDP house in the nearby township of Smithville, and a trip to the studio is now a short walk away. Elsabe relishes big projects like the travelling totem, saying, “It’s like the time we did the chandelier for the White House”, referencing a monumental moment in the studio’s history, when it was commissioned to create two chandeliers for the Washington building.
Artist-designer Scott was the mainstay for the Life, Love and Happiness totem – it is ultimately his design steerage that took the sculpture to its completion, with the assistance of Elsabe, who did the beading, and local designer Tielmann de Villiers, who helped create the birds of happiness.
This totem was proudly made by:
Scott B Hart
Tielmann de Villiers