Make Your Apartment Pop

Three artists show you how to personalise your space using Pop Paint

pop paint

Words: Afrika Bogatsu | Photography: Seth Zworestine | Art Direction: Charl Edwards

Put a fresh, fun and personal touch to your home furnishings with Pop Paint, a lead-free, water-based paint that's easy to use, suitable for most surfaces and available in 20 amazing colours. 

To inspire you to make your furniture pop we asked three local artists to customise Superbalist apartment pieces, proof that everyday functional items can be turned into works of art. 

Musonda Kabwe

Musonda Kabwe

Musonda Kabwe is a 25-year-old Joburg-based artist whose work is inspired by simple line and brush work.

“I think there's a big need for more young African artists to take a bold step and try going full time, it's difficult but it pays off — sometimes. I don't think there's ever been a better time. You are in demand.” 

Musonda’s words aren’t to be taken lightly or dismissed as just talk, having gone through the process of finding himself through his work, which includes work for big brands like FNB, Telkom, Palladium and others. He knows what he’s talking about. 

“I was an illustrator working a day job and felt myself losing my vitality and sense of direction, so I started my project (a comic series titled "Nonarrativ.”) as a way to start drawing on a regular basis again.”

Musonda Kabwe

Musonda’s customisation tip: “Do some research so that you can see what works. Then start simple. It's all about not overdoing it with too much paint.”

Regarding the customisation he did for us, Musonda says his love for streetwear informed the art direction of the piece.

“You can look at the piece in two ways; either as a beautiful combination of abstract line and forms, or you can look deeper and find various faces, clothing items and shoes. It's an abstract illustration of a flatlay, with shoes, a Supreme T-shirt, adidas sneakers, Nike Jordan ones and some hypebeasts.”

Lucie de Moyencourt

Lucie de Moyencourt’s

Architect, set designer, illustrator, painter and self-proclaimed maximalist Lucie de Moyencourt’s whimsical and feminine customisation pieces were inspired by the speed, looseness and freedom of many turn of the century artists like Matisse. 

“I thought to paint only bodies and just see what happens without references, much like the sketches I draw in my sketchbooks of random people and positions.”

Having studied architecture, it’s clear to see how her seven years of studying and a subsequent three years of practice have influenced Lucie's style and work through the years. She says they’ve given her a unique point of view of the city and the relationships between people and the built environment. 

“Most of my ink drawings are people in a space and architecture has enabled me to understand landscapes as well as improve my sense of perspective.”  

However, she credits her visits to the Musee D'Orsa as a child as having had more of an influence to her style. 

Lucie de Moyencourt

Lucie’s customisation tip: “I believe that everybody can paint, however the practice of it gives you the confidence. Pinterest is your best friend! Go and scout around there, many of the ideas get broken down to help you step by step. Start with a great idea, piece of masking tape, nice coloured paint, and furniture, there are sooooo many options for anyone."

Lucie advises artists to break into new spaces outside of galleries for wider reaching exposure, and is showing at Kleinsky's Delicatessen until the end of March.

“Sunday Drive is my current show of 51 ink paintings going all around the Cape peninsula. It is a summery show of Cape Town and its glorious weekender destinations and beaches.”

Ben Eagle

Ben Eagle

If you look at Ben Eagle’s work and think, ‘Ugh, I can do that, it’s just a bunch of blob like shapes in primary colours’ you're mistaken, as the process is far from simple. 

“It looks and sounds simple but it can often be quite difficult to get the shapes and colours to work perfectly together in unison.”

Ben's creative process usually starts with a rough sketch on paper, which he will then vectorise and explore colour options for on his computer. From there it either gets printed or painted onto various surfaces, in this case a lamp and side tables from Sixth Floor.

Regarding the customisation he did for us, Ben, who is currently working on his first international collaboration with a home decor brand, describes his work as showpieces meant for minimal use.

“I wanted the pieces to look like they’re collectable items and if someone had to display them in a gallery or in their home they would have the same effect.”

Ben Eagle

Ben’s customisation tip: "Keep it simple, because less is more, and tape is your friend."

With Johannesburg’s gallery scene a lot smaller, despite its community of young collectors, Ben couldn’t resist the call of the Mother City’s vibrant and thriving art community when the opportunity arose. 

“It’s great to see so many people young and old going out of their way to appreciate art. There’s also a lot of international attention which is amazing. But I also just wanted to live near Giovanni’s Deli in Green Point, so that I would never run out of freshly sliced Italian Salami ever again.”

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