Art and Design

Eating, sleeping and living art

Aneesa Fazel

From interior design to outdoor exhibitions, Nicholas Kerr has found his niche in the creative world.

A life in art: Nicholas Kerr of the creative collective Fiftymillimeter. (Madelene Cronjé)

With a love of art and street culture, a creative collective called Fiftymillimeter has been standing out in originality with conceptual art and design.

Artists Nicholas Kerr, Mike de Villiers and Ronell Botes work on projects ranging from interior and exterior customisations for office and studio spaces to events and functions.

They are also involved in live painting, web designs, canvassing and exhibitions.

Office spaces showcasing the interior design work of Fiftymillimeter are found at Dapper Streetwear, Munks Concepts Stores, Pizza Point franchises, Toxic Candy and Trans-Africa Media. The collective completed the interior design of a studio at 24 Carrots and has devised interior design for Multimedia Solutions and others.

Exterior designs are found at Standard Bank Big Bash at Johannesburg’s Park Station, where they painted eight rooms.

During campus activations at the University of Johannesburg, the University of Pretoria, Wits University and the University of the Free State, the group  assisted with the painting of walls used by students to sign their names and add messages for events and functions, and they produced graffiti for the Adidas Celebrate Originality street party in Melrose Arch.

Their exhibitions and graffiti art are found at Arts on Main, In Colour at Velo and others.

Kerr (32) says life is all about art — “art to me is live, eat, sleep”. He studied fine art at the National School of the Arts in Johannesburg and has pretty much been into art his whole life. A variety of the group’s work is available on the website fiftymilli-meter.co.za.

The collective is preparing for an exhibition at Supremebeing in Rosebank. Kerr spends his days sketching or painting — if not for projects, then for fun.

Why the name Fiftymillimeter?
Ha! Haven’t thought about that one, I always get asked!

What’s wrong with South African design/art/illustration?
There’s actually nothing wrong with South African design and illustration, etcetera. I think people should take more time to explore local artists and stop riding on the rest of the world’s art and focus more on the locals.

What’s right with South African design/art/illustration?
Its positive, creative, vibrant.

What are you reading?
The Walking Dead.

Where do you like hanging out?
Don’t really hang out anywhere, I choose to use my time more wisely. I’m always working on furthering my skills.

What music are you playing in your car?
Mr Dibbs — The 30th Song.

When you want to escape Jo’burg, where do you like to visit?
Belgium — my home away from home.

Which part of Jo’burg do you like?
My favourite area would have to be the Maboneng Precinct.

What is your favourite food?
Pizza.

What is the last movie that you watched that completely blew you away?
Safe.

Wine or beer?
Beer.

Now for a cheesy question: cheese or chocolate?
Definitely chocolate.

Do you watch TV? If yes, what is your favourite show?
I do watch TV: Richard Hammond’s Miracles of Nature.

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