Today’s Youth South Africa post showcases Alphabet Zoo, a grassroots, Jozi-rooted street culture zine. This project is the work of printmakers Mini and Isaac, who work out of the NewARC studios in Newtown.
Where did the idea for Alphabet Zoo come from?
We were sitting in Joubert Park opposite Johannesburg Art Gallery, when we suddenly thought there are not enough Jo’burg art collectives, collective that don’t only focus on art but also on culture.
Please tell us a little about what Alphabet Zoo is all about.
Alphabet Zoo was established in 2010 and is a group of young traditional printmaking artists based in Johannesburg that gives a platform for young talented artists, illustrators, publishers and designers to contribute their skills and ideas to the South African alternative culture…
Collaboration appears to be an important part of what you do, can you tell us a little more about why this is…
We are interested in the different methods that different people work in and the outcomes of the works at the end. This is why our work is community based.
Where can people find Alphabet Zoo and get involved?
In what ways would you say your zines relate and respond to Johannesburg as a city?
Most of our zines are made from recycled paper (newspaper posters) we find on the city street poles and robots and our subject matter is about the community that we live in, which is Johannesburg.
You’re both fine artists. Does Alphabet Zoo provide an alternate platform to exhibit your work in appose to a conventional gallery-type setting?
In a way, yes.
What are your views on the current ‘creative scene’ in South Africa?
The south African street art and print culture is growing faster them it was in the recent years, that’s dope.
Please tell us a little about your recent participation in the Live Creative Sessions…
We were given an opportunity to showcase and present our work as Alphabet zoo to a bigger audience and to young people that do similar stuff. We did a lot of networking that day.
Fast-forward ten years: where are you, and what are you each doing?
MINI: Hosting the biggest zine fest in Africa!
This post forms part of our Young South Africa series. Read other posts here.