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Bold and emblazoned with character, the ceramic work of Madoda Fani carries a dramatically unique sensibility. Inspired by his African heritage, Fani makes hand-coiled, burnished and smoke-fired pieces that are a contemporary evolution of the traditional ceramics indigenous to Southern Africa.

Born in 1975, he grew up in Gugulethu township in Cape Town and discovered his love of clay as a fine art student at Sivuyile College. He worked as a ceramic painter in various pottery studios, gradually developing his own pieces and style. In 2000, his work was selected for the Salon Internationale de l’Artisanat de Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso. There he met the ceramicist  Simon Masilo, who introduced him to smoke-firing. In 2009, he moved to Johannesburg and began to deepen his craft at the Kim Sacks School of Ceramics. He learned how to burnish clay with a stone from Jabu Nala, the daughter of legendary Zulu beer-pot maker Nesta Nala, and mastered smoke-firing techniques under the guidance of Nic Sithole.

Although he uses traditional techniques, Fani’s curvaceous, coiled forms and hand-carved embellishments are entirely distinct. He works on a large scale, building organic-shaped vessels whose smooth surfaces are punctuated by intricate, repetitive patterns that give them a scaled, insect-like appearance. Most recently, his work with Southern Guild has seen him branch out into clay furniture and bronze sculpture.

He has exhibited with Southern Guild at Design Miami and The Salon Art + Design, and as part of the Christie’s London annual design auction. Fani has joined residency programmes in Argentina (2009) and France (2013), received first prize at the 2016 Ceramics Southern Africa Exhibition as well as the Ndebele Milling & Mining Premier Award at the 2015 G&W Mineral Resources Ceramics SA Gauteng Regional Exhibition.

Madoda Fani
Inkonyane (Calf) I

Terracotta clay
45 x 45 x 61 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Inkonyane (Calf) I

Terracotta clay
45 x 45 x 61 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Inkonyane (Calf) II

Terracotta clay
45 x 45 x 61 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Inkonyane (Calf) II

Terracotta clay
45 x 45 x 61 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Nokukhanya (Light)

Terracotta clay
40.5 x 43 x 73.5 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Nokukhanya (Light)

Terracotta clay
40.5 x 43 x 73.5 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Nomathemba (Hope)

Terracotta clay
45 x 36 x 71.5 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Nomathemba (Hope)

Terracotta clay
45 x 36 x 71.5 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Nompunelelo (Success)

Smoke-fired terracotta clay
40 x 38 x 72 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Nompunelelo (Success)

Smoke-fired terracotta clay
40 x 38 x 72 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Itafile I

Painted and glazed terracotta clay
48 x 48 x 45 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Itafile I

Painted and glazed terracotta clay
48 x 48 x 45 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Itafile II

Painted and glazed terracotta clay
43 x 43 x 46 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Itafile II

Painted and glazed terracotta clay
43 x 43 x 46 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Itafile III

Painted and glazed terracotta clay
52 x 42 x 47 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Itafile III

Painted and glazed terracotta clay
52 x 42 x 47 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Itafile Smoke-Fired I and II

Smoke-fired terracotta
44.5 x 44.5 x 62 / 44 x 44 x 65 cm
Unique edition of 12

Madoda Fani
Itafile Smoke-Fired I and II

Smoke-fired terracotta
44.5 x 44.5 x 62 / 44 x 44 x 65 cm
Unique edition of 12

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Madoda Fani
Isangqa (Circle)

Ash timber
130 x 130 x 42cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Isangqa (Circle)

Ash timber
130 x 130 x 42cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Untitled Carved Form

Smoke fired terracotta
40 x 40 x 50 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Untitled Carved Form

Smoke fired terracotta
40 x 40 x 50 cm
Unique

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Madoda Fani
Untitled Uncarved Form

Smoke fired terracotta
40 x 40 x 43 cm
Unique

Madoda Fani
Untitled Uncarved Form

Smoke fired terracotta
40 x 40 x 43 cm
Unique

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