A South African author went beyond mere cover art and illustrations when she teamed up with a local design and animation studio to create tangible art works relating to the themes in her latest book.
For her second novel, Zoo City, writer Lauren Beukes and the am i collective studio in Cape Town collaborated with local illustrators to create five distinct, 40 centimetre high, vinyl Bares.
The am i collective donated five undecorated Bares from its Bare Project to the participating illustrators, who then had to use the themes in Lauren’s book as inspiration to decorate the Bares.
But this is not merely a clever and novel way for Lauren to publicise her book. For this book-inspired art has heart. Not merely because the five unique and whimsical Zoo City Bares that have sprouted from the collective are so irresistibly adorable, but because all the proceeds from auctioning the Bares online will be going to The Suitcase Project charity, an art-therapy initiative set up to aid young refugees living in South Africa. The Suitcase Project helps these kids to cope with the trauma of fleeing their war-ravaged countries – often after having been orphaned or torn from family and friends – through art and storytelling therapy. This specific charity was chosen since the plight of refugee kids are also one of the themes Lauren addresses in Zoo City.
If you want one of these sweet Zoo City Bare statues to brighten up your home or office, you can still place your bid at local auction site Bidorbuy until 10 August 2010. For more about Lauren and her book, visit Lauren’s page at Book Southern Africa.