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Botswana’s Mabeo + Fendi Team Up on the Kompa Collection

12.13.21 | By
Botswana’s Mabeo + Fendi Team Up on the Kompa Collection
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As more design goodness pours forth from Design Miami/ 2021, Fendi and Mabeo introduce their Kompa Collection. The project is based in ongoing research being conducted by Fendi into craft specializations. For Design Miami/ they invited the Botswana, Africa-based furniture and accessories brand, along with its associated studio, to participate in a collaboration. Mabeo met and worked with artisans across the country of Botswana, developing a story that exists between the techniques and viewpoints present in various crafts.

Kompa is a collection of ten pieces of furniture made using interrelated craft methods from across Botswana. The collection was named by Mabeo’s oldest craftsperson and means something that is holistically complete. Some of Kompa’s pieces were made by one individual, while others required further collaboration between craftspeople to be completed.

sculpture, two chairs, and a stool in a gallery setting

Gabi Gabi sculpture, Foro Chair, Loma Stool, Maduo Chair

Let’s dig in. The Loma Stool is multi-functional and can act as either two storage containers, two stools, or when whole a side table. Ancient pottery methods and woodworking were required to make the piece functional, with the interior being painted by even more artists. Both the efo Stool and the Maduo Chair make the collaboration with Fendi come full circle. The efo Stool uses the brand’s double F mark, bringing together clay and Panga Panga wood, to create a sense of balance. The different materials are able to fit together while also remaining independent from one another. The Maduo Chair translates O’Lock, jewelry designed by Delfina Delettrez Fendi for the Roman House. Using geometry and interesting points of connection, the chair’s design is able to highlight crafted details that are not only beautiful but practical.

wood seat and stool

Shiya Seat, Loma Stool

The rest of the Kompa Collection includes the Chichira Cabinet, the Foro Chair, the Gbi-Gabi sculpture, the Gabinyana Table Lamp, and the Shiya Seat. The final piece is an interpretation of Fendi’s iconic Peekaboo handbag for which Mabeo looked to desert-dwelling craftspeople who used traditional methods to tan, treat, and stitch the seat. They created components of cast metal and hand-carved wood in an effort to share their desire to create a respectful and balanced interaction with their surroundings.

Finally, the collection includes an accompanying limited-edition publication that shares the road trips, meetings, and process of creating Kompa. You’ll also find sketches for each of the ten pieces.

wood cabinet

Chichira Cabinet

sculptural table lamp

Gabinyana Table Lamp

wood chair

Maduo Chair

wood chair

Maduo Chair

wood chair

Foro Chair

detail of wood chair

Foro Chair

wood seat

Shiya Seat

wood seat

Shiya Seat

detail of wood seat

Shiya Seat

wood stool

efo Stool

wood stool

Loma Stool

wood stool separated in two pieces

Loma Stool

detail of one half of wood stool

Loma Stool

dark-skinned man sitting in wood chair next to cabinet

Peter Mabeo

Kelly Beall is senior editor at Design Milk. The Pittsburgh-based graphic designer and writer has had a deep love of art and design for as long as she can remember, and enjoys sharing her finds with others. When undistracted by great art and design, she can be found making a mess in the kitchen, consuming as much information as possible, or on the couch with her three pets. Find her @designcrush on social.