Modern Maker

Ahead of designer Gregor Jenkin’s forthcoming solo show at Southern Guild Cape Town, we preview his unique and storied pieces, and signature pared-down vernacular. Widely lauded as one of South Africa’s foremost designers and a self-proclaimed ‘maker of things’, Gregor’s interest in engineering, intervention and re-imagining has shaped his body of work; work that is at once nostalgic and innately contemporary.

His solo show at the Southern Guild Silo gallery will feature a broad spectrum of work – a snapshot of his studio as it is today. New work inspired by the shapes of heritage steel salvaged from the Silo district will be shown alongside well-known furniture and subtly adjusted Jenkin’s classics. ‘The furniture you recognise will have some sort of nuance’, says Gregor. ‘There’ll be a subtlety that people who know my work will understand and people who don’t know my work will be interested in.’

The simplicity, beauty and range of Gregor’s work is the result of a thoughtful lo-tech process that is part engineering, part sculpture. ‘His focus on form combined with the depth of his narratives gives the work a quality that transcends definition,’ says COO of Southern Guild Julian McGowan. Gregor was the first African designer to feature at Design Miami and has pieces in the permanent collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Modern Art. He was also the first recipient of the Design Foundation Icon Award 2012; a special treat for lovers of his work and design to connect to new pieces.

The Gregor Jenkin solo runs from 9 November 2017 to 12 February 2018. Southern Guild Gallery GUILD 5B, Silo 5, V&A Waterfront. Visit for more information. 

Photography Courtesy of Southern Guild