Justin Southey along with a bunch of other really talented illustrators and artists are in a new exhibition opening tonight at Salon 91. Check out the facebook page over here. We chatted to Justin about his work for this typographic exhibition and if you in Cape Town make sure you attend the opening tonight!


1. You involved with a new exhibition coming up this week. Can you tell us about it?

Well, The show is called Back in 5 Mins, and is a show which highlights the use of typography and sign writing in Urban culture. It is a group show of typographers and illustrators and along with myself, it includes; Ben Johnston, Clinton Campbell of Studio Muti, Clement de Bruin, & Dani Loureiro.

I see my current work as reflecting the energy, colour and vibrance of the streets, I endeavored to create pieces which were both sophisticated, yet playful. I drew strongly from the local narrative, and allowed my pieces to act as voices of the city.

JustinSouthey_2013_Cape employer's nightmare

2. Do you think people have an appreciation for type as an art piece?

Yes certainly. Typography, or at least artworks using typography have become increasingly popular as an art form in the last few years. I know it’s more of a popular culture thing but how many re tweets of Keep calm and… have you seen in the last year?

3. How did you get involved with this exhibition?

Monique from Salon91 contacted me as she she felt that my work would contrast really well with some of the other artists in the show

JustinSouthey_2013_we will not be shaken

‘Back in 5 Minutes’ – An Exhibition of Typography from Nicholas James on Vimeo.

4. The video for the exhibition is really beautiful and it looked liked everyone had fun at your studio. What have you learnt through the process of doing your artwork for the show?

Often my set ideas for a piece just don’t work, and I have to be able let go of my vision for something as it evolves into something different. Often this hybrid of ideas creates something even better, so in terms of something I have learnt, it would be to explore and play until it works and not to be too dogmatic regarding my original idea

5. Any exciting plans up ahead besides this exhibition? You got a totem at Design Indaba right?

Ya, I have a bunch of Totem like pieces up at the Design Indaba exhibition (curated by Li Edelkoort). I actually heard about the Design Indaba exhibition whilst creating work for the Salon91 show, I submitted work, was selected, and suddenly found myself creating works for 2 shows which had deadlines on the same day, so needless to say , It’s been a pretty manic past few weeks. I feel really privileged to be part of the show as only 52 people were selected out of over a thousand entries.

JustinSouthey_2013_To Infinity

JustinSouthey_2013_We have this Hope

6. Where can we see more of your work?




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *