Next Edition:

Lee Thomson is a Cape Town based trumpet player who is well known for his cross-genre ventures and performances in bands like Hog Hoggidy Hog, Mix n Blend, We Set Sail, and Kesivan and The Lights, amongst others. He also sessions for Goodluck, Toya Delazy, Grassy Spark and many more.

Lee holds a degree in Jazz Performance from the University of Cape Town, and was a member of the Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Band. He regularly tours the world with his various projects, having played to audiences across Europe, India, Mexico, Reunion Island and South Africa.

We caught up with Lee to ask him a few questions in the lead up to his performance at the October edition of the First Thursdays Sessions.


Image by Laura Mccullagh

Let’s start at the beginning. Where did your love for music begin and what lead you to pursue the trumpet? I was always drawn to music as far back as I can remember, obsessed with choirs and the drums. My love for the trumpet started when I was lucky enough to see Hugh Masakela for the first time at Kippies in Joburg with my dad and my stepmom. That coupled with an opening trumpet slot when I was 14. My first teacher was Trumpet legend Ian Smith. He really inspired me to practice and take the instrument seriously.

You have a degree in Jazz Performance from UCT, but you’re also well known for performing in bands that fall outside of the jazz genre? How did the one lead to the other? For me music is music. If it moves me I aim to explore it. Jazz is definitely home base and has given me the tools to dive into all sorts of genres. I really do enjoy the variety both musically and culturally. From Jazz to Punk to Electronic music. I find being able to contribute across genres extremely satisfying.


Image by Gregory Franz

What is your experience of being a musician in South Africa right now? I love being a musician in South Africa. I get to play with world-class musicians on a weekly basis. I also get to play a lot of varied gigs which keeps things interesting. The jazz scene is thriving in Cape Town and there’s a real sense of community happening. You can see great jazz at least five times a week. I’m a full-time musician and don’t do anything else to make a living.

You recently came back from Europe where you performed at a bunch of shows and festivals? How would you compare playing abroad to playing locally? Going to Europe is as much about gigging as it is checking out new music and meeting new people. I look at it as an inspiration top-up. It’s different in the sense that there’s just more of everything. More festivals, more venues, more artists and more audience. Being there affords me the opportunity to check out my musical heroes and to collab with my peers. It also reaffirms that we have a world-class scene here in South Africa.


Image by Laura Mccullagh

What advice would you give to young jazz-influenced musicians looking to break into the local and international jazz scene? Travel a lot, stay humble, practice and always be open to new things!

Who’s doing interesting stuff on the local scene that you’d recommend checking out? I’m really enjoying the Unity Band and really love what Mandisi Dynatyis is doing. If you haven’t checked them out please do! Really exciting stuff!


Image by Laura Mccullagh

Top 5 desert island albums (of any genre)?
Miles Davis – Kind of Blue
Felix Laband – Deaf Safari
Pat Metheny – One Quiet Night
Dave Douglas – Poses
Bonobo – The North Borders

Where can people follow your musical movements and find more of your music?
https://www.instagram.com/leelips
https://www.facebook.com/leethomsonband


Lee Thomson will be taking the stage together with Jason Reolon on keys and Jonno Sweetman on drums at the fifth edition of the First Thursdays Sessions on Thursday 3 October 2019. The performance starts at 9pm, followed by a vinyl set by DJ Mighty from 10pm. Upstairs at the Gin Bar, 64a Wale Street. The Spring season of the First Thursdays Sessions is presented by Maker’s Mark Bourbon Whisky and produced by Thursdays Projects.
 Event staging provided by LEVO Staging & Audio.

Explore this month’s highlights

Sign up for our Newsletter

View the full programme

Cape Town Johannesburg

Next Edition:

The Unity Band has been making a name for themselves in the local music industry since the release of their debut album Fabric. The album beautifully captures the amalgamation of the band’s diversity as they explore elements of jazz, hip hop, poetry, salsa, funk and at its core, a contemporary African sound. We caught up with the band and shot them a few questions in the lead up to their show at the upcoming edition of the First Thursdays Sessions at the Gin Bar, 4 July 2019.

Unity Band First Thursdays Sessions Gin Bar 4 July 2019

Tell us a bit about how The Unity Band initially came together The Unity Band met at the South African College of Music at the University of Cape Town, where we were all in different years studying Jazz. In 2017 Lumanyano (who’s nickname is Unity) approached each of us individually and asked us to play for his performance class (which is a performance slot that students are allowed to fill and have performances every Wednesday, open to the public, showcasing some the work that they’ve been working on) which was the first one of the year. We hadn’t all played as a collective before so this was our first showcase. After the performance we had people asking us if we were going to perform anytime soon and eventually decided to book our first gig at the Great Wizoo. After those two performances we kinda thought “Hey, we’ve got something going here let’s see if we can make it work”, so we booked a few more gigs around the city and then decided to make it official and became a band.

Unity Band First Thursdays Sessions Gin Bar 4 July 2019

Where did the love for playing music begin and what lead you to pursue the drums of all instruments? [Lumanyano Mzi] The love for playing began in my father’s house. My father being a bandleader and having all the instruments in the house made it possible for me to choose any instrument. I could have played any other instrument, however my heart fell in love with the drums. What led me to play drums is that whenever I’d go watch performances with my father’s band, I’d always be sitting next to the drummer of any of the bands playing in all the concerts and observing how they played. One of the things that I loved was the fact that they always seemed to be enjoying every minute of playing, and you could see that from how they smiled that they were having a lot of fun. Another thing is that they can always play even if there’s no electricity. I’m reminded of a power cut at a festival when I was 7 where the drummer just kept on playing in the dark and how it made the audience so happy.

What is your experience of being a jazz musician in South Africa in 2019? Being a jazz musician in SA is an exciting experience, there is always room to explore and grow and challenge yourself through the different styles that are found in this vast genre. One also learns to have a great work ethic and to learn how to hustle, because you need to constantly be looking for new opportunities to perform and earn enough for you to live well. We are all still quite young, but we are all doing various things in the industry to ensure that we have a long shelf life, and also still enjoy the process of making music along the way. It’s not always an easy journey because of how the arts are supported in our country, but we make it work and are grateful for all the opportunities we do get and the people who support us throughout our journey.

What advice would you give to young jazz-influenced musicians looking to break into the local and international jazz scene? Explore as much music as you can. You never know where you will find inspiration. Work on your business skills too, as the music industry has evolved from only being handled by big businesses and labels. Independent artists are now at the forefront. The only way one can get to the point as an artist who travels the world playing festivals and so forth is to make sure you have all the necessities such as recorded music, biography, videos and live videos, a good social media following, and a fan base. Collaborate and find booking agents, not necessarily managers, but agents all around the world, that you can sell your product to. Most importantly support other musicians, network and build relationships that can also help your career. Have fun, and be true to the music. If you honour the music it will honour you.

Who’s doing interesting stuff on the local scene that you’d recommend checking out? From our peers, we would say Sean Sandby, MSMF, Thembelihle Dunjana, Muneeb Herman, Zoe Molelekwa and from our big brothers and sisters who have been in the game, Mandisi Dyantis, Mabuta, Saba Kaapstad, Youthphemism, Ronan Skillen, Reza Khota, Blake Hellaby.

Top 5 desert island albums (of any genre)?
The Unity Band’s Fabric (always), but if we’d have to exclude ourselves possibly:
Ancient Agents – Ancient Agents
Mrigya – World Harmony
Mandisi Dyantyis – Somandla
Bob Marley – Exodus
Jimmy Dludlu – Afro Centric

Where can people follow your musical movements and find more of your music? People can follow our musical movements and everything in between on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter all @theunitybandza.

Unity Band First Thursdays Sessions Gin Bar 4 July 2019

The Unity Band will be taking the stage at the second edition of the First Thursdays Sessions on Thursday 4 July 2019. The performance starts at 9pm followed with a DJ set by Marmite Fox from 10pm. Upstairs at the Gin Bar, 64a Wale Street. The First Thursdays Sessions are presented by Auchentoshan Single Malt Whisky and produced by Thursdays Projects.

Explore this month’s highlights

Sign up for our Newsletter

View the full programme

Cape Town Johannesburg

Next Edition:

We sat down with the multi-talented, ever-astounding, artist Olivié Keck to chat about her practice, recent movements, animated movements and of course, some of her favourite records. Catch a mini-exhibition of Olivié’s works along with a DJ set by Olivié at the May 2019 edition of the First Thursdays Cape Town Official Warm-Up at the Gin Bar, 64a Wale Street.

They Say Only The Good Die Young 2017 by Olivié Keck

They Say Only The Good Die Young 2017 by Olivié Keck

Let’s begin at the beginning. How did you get to where you are today?
I did a BFA at Michaelis. From there on out, I basically took it as it came. Most of what I’ve cultivated in my career has been quite organic and I’ve generally just pursued gut feelings about directions in my practise. I guess my recipe is part hard work, part experimentation.

You have an exhibition showing at CIRCA in Johannesburg at the moment. What has it been like putting a show together in the City of Gold? And what’s your general experience of the place in comparison to Cape Town?
Jozi is a pulsing city. My most recent exhibition Drop Dead Gorgeous was perfect for the deluxe energy of The City of Gold. Cape Town is slow and sleepy in comparison and Joburg audiences really know how to come to the party in a big way. I was so grateful for the positive response.

How Could Any Body Love You And Lose You 2018 by Olivié Keck

How Could Any Body Love You And Lose You 2018 by Olivié Keck

You’ve done some work with VR before. How did that come about? And do you see yourself experimenting with more alternative media in the future, or was it more of a one time thing? Working in VR just kind of happened organically. I loved the medium and wanted to translate my drawing style into an immersive 3D environment. I was fortunate to know the right tech-savy people that could help me bring my aesthetic vision to life. These projects are very much collaborations between myself, Evan Greenwood (programmer) and Jason Sutherland (Sound Artist). I hope to work more in the medium of VR in future. It’s such a unique space for visual exploration to conjure new worlds.

Long Distance Caller Preview from Olivié Keck on Vimeo.

You’ve shown work in the Gin Bar space before, back when it was still Commune.1. What was the last work that you showed there, and what will you be showing on 2 May? Yeah it’s a weird one because this was the first space I had ever had a major solo exhibition (‘False Priest’,2014). At this event I’ll be showing a reminiscent with a mixed bag of O.K. drawings & prints.

A Pot for The Perplexed 2015 by Olivié Keck

A Pot for The Perplexed 2015 by Olivié Keck

What advice would you give to a young artist that you wish someone had given you when you were starting out?
I think sharing ideas and generating discussion is very important for artists. Being an artist is not about being an island. Be generous with your ideas. This will only make your practice more enriched.

The Betrayal 2018 by Olivié Keck

The Betrayal 2018 by Olivié Keck

Top 5 ‘desert island’ albums?
Beach House Devotion
Youth Lagoon The Year Of Hibernation
The New Pornographers Mass Romantic
Frank Ocean Blonde
Mica Levi Under Her Skin Soundtrack

Look What I Built For You 2018 by Olivié Keck

Look What I Built For You 2018 by Olivié Keck

Where can people find your work and follow you?
Instagram: @oliviekeck
Website: www.oliviekeck.com

Catch a mini-show of Olivié’s work, as well as a DJ set by the artist at The First Thursdays Official Warm Up between 6 – 9 PM, upstairs at the Gin Bar, 64a Wale Street. The party goes on until late. The First Thursdays Official Warm Up is produced by Thursdays Projects in partnership with Roku Gin.

RSVP HERE

Explore this month’s highlights

Sign up for our Newsletter

View the full programme

Cape Town Johannesburg

Next Edition:

You’ll find the considered, seemingly simple forms that define Ben Eagle’s work span prints, ceramics and collaborations with some of South Africa’s top names and brands. We sat down with Ben to chat about his journey, his practice and of course, some of his favourite records. Catch a mini-exhibition of Ben’s works along with a DJ set by the multi-talented one himself at the April 2019 edition of the First Thursdays Cape Town Official Warm-Up at the Gin Bar (64a Wale Street).

Ben Eagle Print

Hi Ben! Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. Let’s start at the beginning. How did you find your way as an artist and a designer?

I guess it all started with Graffiti, as a teenager I used to sneak out the house in the middle of the night to go paint walls. As I got older I found myself interested in creating more than just letters, I wanted to create art that would be easily relatable for everyone even if art isn’t something you’re into.

Balance is never easy. How do you manage the thresholds between professional, personal and the private in your work and in your life?

I’ve always kept my career as a designer quite separate from my art career, I find it helps not to mix the two because that way they balance each other out and I don’t just rely on one as my creative outlet.

You were born in Johannesburg and you started your career up there, before relocating to Cape Town. How do you find the space between the two cities, specifically with regards to your work as an artist and a designer?

Both cities are amazing because they’re literally complete opposites, I will always have a special appreciation for Johannesburg, particularly the inner city because it’s so raw and unforgiving. Cape Town, on the other hand, has shown me a completely different way of living which has been inspiring in new ways. It helps to have such a strong creative industry with so many different platforms for artists and designers.

Ceramics, prints, fashion-collaborations – your work really gets around! Can you tell us about your approach to working across so many different media?

I don’t necessarily have different approaches when working on different projects. I try make stuff that I would want to own or have in my wardrobe.

What advice would you give to a young artist that you wish someone had given you when you were starting out?

Make whatever makes you happy and don’t be afraid to put it out there.

Top 5 ‘desert island’ albums?

This is a tough one!

1: Toro Y Moi – Anything in Return
2: Archy Marshall – A New Place 2 Drown
3: Erykah Badu – Baduizm
4: Action Bronson – DR Lecter
5: Gucci Mane – Droptopwop

Where can people find your work and follow you?

They can check out beneaglestudio.com or my Instagram @Ben_Eagle_Studio

Catch a mini-show of Ben’s work, as well as a DJ set by the artist at The First Thursdays Official Warm Up between 6 – 9 PM, upstairs at the Gin Bar, 64a Wale Street. The party goes on until late. The First Thursdays Official Warm Up is produced by Thursdays Projects in partnership with Roku Gin.

RSVP HERE

Explore this month’s highlights

Sign up for our Newsletter

View the full programme

Cape Town Johannesburg

Next Edition:

Jean De Wet is one of our all-time-top-5-desert island favourite Cape Town-based artists. With a wide-ranging practice and an even wider-ranging set of projects, side-projects and project-projects, we were lucky enough to sit down with the restless traveller to find out a little more about his journey, the relationship between his seemingly divergent practices and his favourite records. Remember, Jean will be playing a set at the March 2019 edition of the First Thursdays Official Warm-Up at the Gin Bar on Wale Street.

An illustration or drawing by Cape Town based artist and illustrator Jean De Wet

Can you tell us a little more about your path as an artist. Where did you grow up? What did you study? What types of jobs have you had and where do you find yourself at the moment?

I moved around quite a bit as a child. I lived in both Queenstown and Durban before moving to Pretoria at the age of 13. I then studied Information design at the University of Pretoria, until I finally moved to Cape Town after getting a job at Illustration studio Am I Collective. After four years of fast-paced working in the advertising and design world, I decided to go freelance in order to focus on more personal projects and develop skills I would otherwise not have any time for. I’ve been doing that now since 2012… and haven’t really looked back.

Your work spans a number of disciplines and media – from zine-making to painting to print-based-media to animation and music-making. How do you make sense of your practice(s)? Do you find that different parts of personality or psyche, play out in different media or projects?

I think that obsession has a large part to play. I find myself going deep into different disciplines because of how addictive the excitement of discovery and experimentation is. I find that the more I juggle disparate thought processes, the more ideas cross-pollinate and become their own unique things. I tend to meander through interests as they emerge and dissipate, which is also a way for me to keep excited about making things.

Music plays an integral role in your work. Can you please tell us about the relationship(s) between the visual and the aural in your practice. How do the landscapes and the worlds that you create relate to the music and soundscapes that you produce?

I think they both share qualities in the meditative part of the process. With both music and visual art, there is a phase where technical and creative limitations are established, which then becomes a ‘space’ where I can just channel thoughts and experiences, unfettered by whether it will ‘work’ or not. As long as I’m having fun during this phase, I can expect to create something that I’m pleased with. In that way soundscapes and landscapes become ‘emotional maps’, etched over time.

Your advice for people trying to start out in the world of art-or-stuff-making?

I’d say that it’s important to know that it takes lots of time and effort… Probably more than you imagined at first. There are times in your career where you think you can’t push or give any more… but I’ve found that it is those extreme times that you learn the most. Be kind to yourself and remember that life exists outside your projects, but don’t expect to get anywhere without working twice as hard as anyone else. You really need to live and breathe your art.

What are your all-time-top 5 ‘desert island’ albums?

This is obviously a super difficult question… but if I was forced to make a decision right now, I’d say…

Arthur Russell – Love is Overtaking Me
Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti – Worn Copy
Animal Collective – Sung tongs
Boards of Canada – Music has the right to children
Cocteau Twins – Heaven or Las Vegas

Catch what will be an extra special set from Jean, alongside a mini-exhibition of his work at The First Thursdays Official Warm Up between 6 – 9 PM, upstairs at the Gin Bar, 64a Wale Street. The party goes on until late. The First Thursdays Official Warm Up is produced by Thursdays Projects in partnership with Roku Gin.

Explore this month’s highlights

Sign up for our Newsletter

View the full programme

Cape Town Johannesburg

Next Edition:

Rosie Mudge is an artist based in Cape Town. She’s our selected visual artist for January’s Official Warm Up at The Gin Bar. You’ll be able to see some of her work and catch her DJ set from 6pm to 8pm. We asked her a few questions. Read on for what she had to say.

 

Rosie Mudge


You work as an artist but you also have a ‘day job’. How do you balance everything and manage your art-making practice?

RM: When I left art school I got a job working at my brothers furniture factory. At first I worked part-time and had a lot more time for art. I had a studio and went to it almost every afternoon for a few years. At this stage in my art-making process I was experimenting with new techniques – focusing on my enjoyment of materials like nail-polish, body glitters and make-up – there was no end result in mind. The work I made during that period was truly repulsive to most of the people I showed it to. Even my family couldn’t find anything to like about it. But it satisfied a part of myself, and I kept going. I was also balancing being a curator, with transitory exhibitions put on through Jnr (a project space I co-developed) and curated a number of group shows as well as Mitchell Messina’s first solo exhibition, Mitchy! As my role at the furniture factory grew and developed, I took on more responsibility and physical time for art-making became harder to get. I gave up my studio and started working from the factory after closing hours. As my work has transformed, the techniques I developed lent themselves to an industrial space, and so this ‘balance’ has become less of a dichotomy and more of an absorption – one into the other and visa versa. I am continually ruminating on ideas and have works in progress which I have been thinking about for well on 5 years now. There’s a lot of time and I try not to put too much pressure on myself to finish works in a restricted timeline. They get finished as and when that happens.

Much of your work is produced with automative paint and glitter glue. How did you end up working with these rather unconventional materials?

RM: I felt massively burned out when I graduated from art school. My previous academic inspirations were all bitter, and my previous techniques felt forced, disingenuous and part of a greater machine of art production, rather than anything to do with myself. So I decided to do a 180 turn and start from the beginning. As it happened, I placed my personal beginning around the age of 12, sitting in my bedroom alone, making things up, playing with polly pocket (yes, still at 12), writing diaries, listening to music, experimenting with make-up and nail polish – enjoying my own solitude, imagination and development of self expression. So, after art school, I spent a few years playing around with materials that inspired me back then, trying to get back into the magic of childhood. After a few years things started to clear up in my mind and I was driven to scale up the visuals I was making. I experimented with manufacturing larger quantities of nail-polish, but then I discovered that automotive paint and nail polish share very similar properties. I loved thinking about those two materials side by side – the tiny, precious nail polish bottles in the hands of girls (and other) vs the industrial automotive paint in the hands of men (and other). On top of this, the enormous tubs of glitter-glue are too good to be true! It’s the real “dip your whole arms in it’ experience.

 

Rosie Mudge

 

In your recent solo show at SMITH, ‘In my room with Mazzy Star’, you refer to your room as a space of psychological safety and creativity. Obviously there’s a specifically domestic or psychological reference there, but the space in which art is made is an equally interesting factor and often one that is hidden from the public. Where do you produce your work and how does it affect what you make?

RM: I guess that in that name I was referring to the psychological space of the mind (your personal, private ‘room’). Although I don’t produce my works in a bedroom, or even a private space, I felt that this analogy speaks to the personal experience of creating things, a private relationship between artist and artwork. Because my current art-making practices are toxic I have to kit myself out with full protection: eye mask, respiratory mask, gloves, fully clothed, sports shoes. Added to that are my playlist and headphones – and I really am blocked off from everything around me. The production process is very physical and gruelling. I usually work for 8 hours at a time without stopping. The music I listen to draws out emotions which feed directly into the works. This goes on and on – it’s very special personal time for me.

How do you find working as an artist in Cape Town – down here at the bottom of the world?

RM: I have no idea what it’s like to be an artist in any other place, I’m not sure being elsewhere would help but I guess I find it difficult here. To feel on the one hand free and at liberty to make what you chose or whatever comes to you, without needing to define yourself, or your practice or outline your own mind. And to have that contrasted by the desire to belong to something, the desire to be understood or related to, to connect to people in conversation… it’s a constant internal battle. I suppose this does not directly relate to Cape Town, but this is how I feel about being an artist in general. If I were at the top of the world, I imagine that it would either be a lot harder, with the saturated markets and art frenzy, or maybe a lot easier as there is more art writing that happens there and two-sided conversations might occur more fluidly.

 

Rosie Mudge


Do you have any advice for people trying to start out in the world of art-making?

RM: Firstly, get a job which gives you enough money to act freely financially with your art-making. It doesn’t have to be in the art world and it doesn’t have to be creative. I have found my ties to a world outside my own creation very energising and the income means that I do not pressurise my art into being successful – it can be a wonderful failure. Having a lot of responsibility outside of your own practice does mean a lot of work, but having less time encourages me to make better use of the time I do have. It also helps me to think quickly in the moment, and ruminate outside of the moment.
Secondly, get involved. Put the ideas you have into practice in any way you can, and try not to rely on the positive affirmation of other people for the valuation of yourself and your art.

Top 5 ‘desert island’ albums?

RM:
MGMT – Congratulations
Of Montreal – The Sunlandic Twins
Beach House – Depression Cherry
Alanis Morissette – Jagged Little Pill
MGMT – Oracular Spectacular

Where can people find you online and find out more about your work?

RM:

https://www.instagram.com/rosiesmudge/
http://www.smithstudio.co.za/content/rosie-mudge
https://rosiemudge.tumblr.com/

 

Catch Rosie Mudge at the First Thursdays Official Warm Up at The Gin Bar, 64a Wale Street. She’ll be doing a DJ set from 6pm to 8pm, with an exhibition of some of her work up as well. The party goes on until late. The First Thursdays Official Warm Up is produced by Thursdays Projects in partnership with Maker’s Mark Craft Bourbon Whisky. 

Explore this month’s highlights

Sign up for our Newsletter

View the full programme

Cape Town Johannesburg

Next Edition:

Jaco Haasbroek is an illustrator and designer based in Cape Town.
If you’ve ever seen The Good News headlines on lampposts around town you’ve seen some of his work. He’s our selected artist for this month’s Official Warm Up, taking place at the Gin Bar on First Thursdays.
We asked him a few questions.


You are a man that wears many hats – DJ, Illustrator, ‘Newsman’, amongst others – How would you describe yourself professionally?

JH: I guess professionally I’m an illustrator & art director. The majority of my ideas manifest themselves through illustration, so this has become the main source of income for me. I enjoy making things and the creative process. Most of my work is concept driven and I have a great love for simplicity. Side projects develop organically from the random ideas I have and can take on a variety of forms, but these tend to be love projects and don’t necessarily pay the bills.

Jaco Haasbroek The Good News First Thursdays Warm Up The Gin Bar First Thursdays Cape Town

From the series ‘The Good News’

What was your path to getting to where you are now? Did you always imagine doing the kind of work that you do?

JH: I’ve always wanted to be an artist. My idea of what that means and entails has changed, but the overarching goal or theme has remained. I took art as a subject at school, studied Fine Art at Stellenbosch University where I discovered a love of design and a more independent way of making art. Upon completing my degree I worked in advertising for two and a half years. This helped me view the creative process from a more concept driven side. It consisted of a lot of problem solving through creative thinking and I really enjoyed this approach. I went freelance for a couple of year after that and worked as a designer in two different jobs. I took on these jobs when financial stresses became a bit overbearing. Most recently I worked at Made by Radio as an illustrator and art director and this proved to be an invaluable experience that pushed me to improve my own craft and broaden my skill set. After almost two years at the studio I am now working freelance again.

Jaco Haasbroek The Good News First Thursdays Warm Up The Gin Bar First Thursdays Cape Town

Jaco Haasbroek

Humour plays a big role in your work. Where does that sense of humour come from?

JH: I honestly don’t know. I think it’s the sixth sense that we are all born with.

Can you tell us a little bit more about “The Good News”. What is the story behind that story?

JH: The Good News is an ongoing series of fictional, light-hearted and generally positive newspaper headlines that I put up in and around the city. The concept came about when I was driving home and spotted a ‘STOLEN’ pet poster. It’s quite sad when someone loses a pet and the idea popped into my head that by simply adding ‘OUR HEARTS’ at the bottom of the poster it would completely change its meaning and give it a positive spin. This idea then evolved into the fake news posters, which rely on the use of wordplay to celebrate the little everyday victories. I’m allowing the project to develop organically but would also like to expand the concept to include more than just the headlines. Possibly a publication of sorts.

Jaco Haasbroek The Good News First Thursdays Warm Up The Gin Bar First Thursdays Cape Town

Jaco Haasbroek

Any advice for people starting out in the creative industries?

JH: Trust your gut. When it feels right, go with it. Try not to compare yourself with others. The internet is a great resource, focus on the ways it helps you to showcase your work. Put yourself out there. Know that it takes hard work and patience to get to where you want to be. If you put in the work, and you keep at it, the rewards will come. Sometimes you need to take on work you might not want to, but short term sacrifices will help you reach those long term goals.

Top 5 ‘desert island’ albums?

JH: The Strokes – Is This It
Radiohead – Okay Computer
Arcade Fire – Funeral
Justice – †
The Velvet Underground – The Velvet Underground

Where can people follow you and your projects?

https://www.instagram.com/haasbroek/
https://www.instagram.com/thegoodnewsza/
https://www.instagram.com/winehundredbucks/

Catch Jaco Haasbroek at the Official First Thursdays Warm Up. He’ll be doing a DJ set from 5.30pm to 7.30pm, with an exhibition of some of his work up as well. The Official First Thursdays Warm Up is produced by Thursdays Projects in partnership with Maker’s Mark Handmade Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whisky.

First Thursdays Offical Warm Ups Wale Street with Makers Mark Whisky

Explore this month’s highlights

Sign up for our Newsletter

View the full programme

Cape Town Johannesburg