Give the Gift of South Africa
In celebration of UBUNTU: Music and Arts of South Africa, the Shop has been carrying unique South African gifts. Take a peek at some of the items available in the Shop, and don't forget to browse through all the items during your next visit!
Born in Umtata, in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa, Megan Bandle spent much of her childhood in Botswana and her later school years in Johannesburg and Durban. She moved to New York City in 2000 and established Coolsville LLC in 2007, with the aim of showcasing the myriad and spectacular art of her homeland through building relationships and linking craftspeople, musicians, visual artists in South Africa with counterparts and community cultural initiatives in NYC.
Megan has an impeccable eye for unique handcrafted objects made from every possible medium: telephone wire, glass, bottle tops, wire, beer cans, beads, leather, recycled garbage bags, tires and wood. On pavements and street corners, in tourist markets, along beach fronts and, and through her relationships with South Africa’s emerging designers she sources unique and exquisitely made objects. Ranging from miniature and giant representations of animals, antique cameras, cars, motorcycles, cellphones, Christmas decorations, and working radios, intricate Ndebele and Nguni beadwork, flamboyant, decorative cushions, practical wallets and funky, fashionable accessories these vibrant, contemporary craft items reflect the rich cultural diversity and creativity of generations of South Africans.
Coolsville LLC is committed to sourcing craft and building sustainable and respectful economic relationships with artists at community level - those selling on the streets and in markets to established arts co-operatives that sustain art and culture local communities through empowering the social capital that is inherent in them. Megan is passionate about creating platforms for small scale initiatives, identifying opportunities for cultural exchange and promoting Ubuntu – the idea that we are all inextricably linked in community and across cultural expressions.
All profits from sales go towards developing resources for South African artists, musicians and designers.