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imibala Art Portfolio

Rado Kirov

Rado Kirov was born in Bulgaria in 1955. He developed an interest in metal art at an early age when he was first exposed to the wonder of the Panagyursko Treasure, an exquisitely hand crafted collection of golden artefacts dating back to the 3rd century BC. Rado began an extensive apprenticeship in copper smithing at the age of 25 in the town of Dobrich Bulgaria under the tutelage of Alexander Raev, one of the greatest craftsmen in Bulgaria at the time. He honed his artistic skills with copper over the next 10 years until immigrating with his family to South Africa in 1991. Rado continues to be a member of the Bulgarian Association of Craftsmen – Section: Copper Smithing. Rado’s passion and skill in copper, shifted to silver and gold during his years of employment with the Pagliari Group in Cape Town. During this time, Rado had the privilege of hand crafting numerous prestigious pieces, including a silver Chalice presented to the late Pope John Paul II by former President Nelson Mandela on behalf of the South African Government in 1998, a silver Rose Bowl presented as a wedding gift to the Japanese Crown Prince Naruhito and his wife by the SA Government, and the Alfred Dunhill Challenge Cup Trophy for golf. Rado was also responsible for the creative design and fabrication of unique collectors’ coins in 1000g pure silver and 1000g 24 carat gold. Rado’s talent received the ultimate recognition by the SA Government when he was commissioned to craft the new parliamentary People’s Mace and the Black Rod mace of the South African Parliament using 18 carat gold. In 2006, drawing on the inspiration of the Panagyursko Treasure, Rado created the Rhino Rhyton, a traditional wine vessel in the shape of a rhinoceros, hand crafted using 1250 g of 22 carat gold. This was a tremendous personal achievement for Rado and an absolute validation of his craftsmanship. Over the last 20 years, Rado gradually shifted his creative focus to product design and functional art working extensively with interior designers and architects. Searching for a new creative outlet and complete freedom of expression, Rado embarked on a new artistic venture at the beginning of 2012 drawing on his extensive knowledge of silver smithing and years of experience in working with various different metals. Rado developed a unique technique of manipulating a sheet of stainless steel by hand, using the inherent physical properties of the metal to create a striking three-dimensional surface that dynamically mirrors its surroundings and draws the observer into the magic of its reflection. Rado’s new-found passion for sculpture and his mastery of stainless steel are expressed in this new medium, which he has called the Mercury Effect.

Mercury wall panel
The wedge
David Kuijers
Rowena Krynauw
Anton Smit
Amber Moir
Sharon Strydom
Alex Hamilton
Vicki Thomas
Andre Stead
Robin Kutinyu
Mary Visser
Catherine Paynter
Eric Eatwell
Lucie De Moyencourt
Theo Paul Vorster
Paula van Coller-Louw
Victor Kirov
Emil Sogor
Gerhard van Eck
Laurinda Belcher
Liffey Joy
Zach Mukwira
Max Kuijers
Tracy Payne
Johann Booyens
Lynne-Marie Eatwell
Claudia Gurwitz
Mark Chapman
Catherine Brennon
Isabel Mertz
Barbara Wildenboer
Esther Mahlangu
Jenny Parsons
Sarah Walters
Strijdom van der Merwe
Adriaan Diedericks
Herman van Nazareth
Zarah Cassim
Mark Hilltout
Chloe Townsend
Andile Dyalvane
Isabella Kuijers
Andrew Barlow
Erin Chaplin
Allesandro Pappada
Walter Battiss
Alastair Barnes
Rado Kirov
Bruce Little
Maritha Van Ameron
Gabrielle Raaff
Gabriela Orzechowski
Catherina Pagani
Marlene Von Durckheim
Zizipho Poswa
Monique du Plessis
Lawrence Brennon
Mia Louw
Janco De Beer
Wilma Cruise
Mind Shana
Sibonelo Chiliza
Wilna Eloff
Lotti Van Der Byl
Lynn Giles
Frans Mulder
Candice Dawn Blignaut
Cathy Layzell
Astrid Dahl
Ferdinand Kidd
Marguerite Roux
Rentia Retief

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