Mandy Coppes-Martin

2021 QEST Scholar - Paper artistry & lace making

Mandy is a visual artist specialising in making both 2 and 3 dimensional art works using specific fibres such as paper thread and pulp and raw un-spun silks. Mandy completed her Masters Degree in Fine Art where she concentrated on the development of local and invasive plant fibres for the production of specialist hand made papers. 

In 2016 Mandy was invited to the Paper Biennial in Rijswijk in the Netherlands and thereafter in 2017 she won the Transparency Design Competition, funded by the Swedish Embassy and curated and hosted by the University of Johannesburg. She has exhibited in numerous group shows in Johannesburg, Pretoria and Cape Town, as well as Belgium, The Netherlands, UK, USA and the Philippines. Her work can be found in various corporate collections such as Sasol, ABSA Bank, Rand Merchant Bank, RHMH, and the Whitman Museum USA.

Mandy’s scholarship will enable her to do an 11 month training programme with master lace maker Jane Wright. They will concentrate on traditional Honiton bobbin lace, new pattern design and the development and making of new contemporary lace works that coincide with her current art practice. 

Lace making is incredibly clever; it follows mathematical equations that are interlinked at various points. Learning a craft such as lace would be to learn the value of something. Learning how something came into being on a socio and political level makes us more invested in our present state as well as our future. It becomes part of who we are.