Alok Vaid-Menon Interviews Queer South African Designer Githan Coopoo

Githan Coopoo is a queer Cape Town designer who infuses his work with ceramics into jewelry-making. He largely pulls from his Desi descent, building upon the metalwork of his grandparents and lifting inspiration from his parents’ relationship. This, in turn, makes for a practice that’s deeply personal, while also speaking to Coopoo’s own experience navigating the world as a queer South African.

On Instagram, Coopoo describes himself as a “curator,” using “clothing and clay as universal mediums to queer the archive and unpack the performative nature of dress.” And his new collection, titled Byzantine, accomplishes just that, with handmade ceramic jewelry that reflects on history with total disregard to traditional gender roles.

Performance artist and poet Alok Vaid-Menon caught…

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