Joburg’s Kalahari book store for much-loved titles

The interior of Orange Grove's Kalahari Books

The interior of Orange Grove’s Kalahari Books

What starts off in fairly regular interview mode – me seated in a comfortable armchair facing Richard Welch, my notebook at the ready, soon shifts shape. It’s as if the four walls beneath the double-volume ceiling of Kalahari Books contain within them some mysterious force that makes a joke of time and exerts competing gravitational pull. Surrounded by thousands (around 70 000 in all, Welch estimates) of books spanning more than a century we flit from shelf to shelf like magpies. We move from titles by JG Ballard to George Bernard Shaw picking the books out, then discarding them for the next attraction. There is poetry and playwriting, Greek epics and tomes on trains, collectables and curiosities and fiction, heaps and heaps of fiction. Continue reading

Saved from a pulp affliction – ‘book artist’ Keri Muller

Africa Reinvented

Africa Reinvented

It’s a map of Africa but not as you would usually know it. From a distance it resembles the texture of oyster mushrooms, their delicate fluted forms cast into whorls of soft colour. Up close you can make out the words that have combined to create the map, and the pages of books that have been delicately folded and glued together to create it.

This artwork “Africa Reinvented” has earned Keri Muller her title as the “book artist” or as Google’s search terms locate her, “Cape Town’s origami expert”. Continue reading