Lulu Kitololo Studio design and illustration highlights from 2016

Happy new year! I hope you had some time to rest and rejuvenate as the year turned. A good chunk of my holiday was spent in Moshi, Tanzania. I stayed at my late grandparents’ home – resting, reading and spending time with family. I came back to Nairobi with renewed enthusiasm and clarity! There are several big (and slightly scary) adventures – design and otherwise – on the horizon this year, for me and for the Studio. I look forward to sharing them with you.

The first one starts next week, when 3 creative friends and I set off for a 15,000km+ road trip through southern Africa (see below).

As we prepare to set off, I wanted to share some highlights from 2016. Many of you have been a part of these projects and endeavours and I thank you deeply for your different contributions. Continue reading “Lulu Kitololo Studio design and illustration highlights from 2016”

Expand in creativity, business and life – September round-up

Regular readers may have noticed my blogging hiatus, as I reconfigured my life and business. However, Afri-love subscribers have been less neglected, thanks to A week of Afri-love: a weekly email I started a few months ago, where I share 5 Afri-love-worthy things. Each edition includes:

  1. Buy African: featuring exquisite African-made/made in Africa goods
  2. Something to look at, read, watch or listen to
  3. Some visual place to get lost in (usually amazing Instagram feeds that will fuel your imagination and take you places!)
  4. Events across the world
  5. Last but not least, an “expand” item – something that I’ve come across that has been useful for me in my quest for better health, creative excellence and success in my business

For those who don’t receive these nuggets weekly, I thought I’d do a round-up of “expand” posts, every 2 months, selecting just 5 of my favourite items.

Here’s edition number one! Continue reading “Expand in creativity, business and life – September round-up”

Staying connected to home: bringing your heritage into your space and into your work

This post is sponsored by online money transfer service WorldRemit

Staying connected to home bringing your heritage into your space and into your work

It’s been over 15 years since I left the place that I still consider my home: Kenya. As much as I’ve appreciated my experiences of living in the US (New York) and in the UK (London and Manchester) – and especially all the people I’ve met, who’ve made my life so much richer – Kenya remains my home.

I periodically reflect on this notion of “home”. What is home? For some it’s where they come from and for others, it’s simply where they live, at the present time. For me, the whole idea is something far less tangible.

When I am at home, I feel it. It’s in how my body just seems to naturally relax, feels more vibrant and literally glows. It’s in the ease of interacting with people and being understood (and this is not even to do with language but rather, our shared cultural experiences and values). And of course, the joy and comfort of family, and people who have known you for what seems like forever.

While these aren’t things I can carry with me, each time I return to my London base, there are two particular ways in which I’ve managed to keep home very close: Continue reading “Staying connected to home: bringing your heritage into your space and into your work”

The Afri-love Sundown Sessions: 3 intimate evenings of live music

Afri-love Sundown Sessions

 

I'm excited to share something I've been working on with you. I've curated a series of intimate live music gigs taking place on the last 3 Fridays of this month, in London. 

As the days get shorter, nights get chillier and London settles down and braces itself for the winter – I dream of sunny days, vibrant colours and the soulful energy that I feel, back home.

Black History Month is the perfect occasion to launch the Sundown Sessions – conceived in the Afri-love spirit of celebrating the work of amazing African and diaspora creatives.

 

The artists

Join me and engage with inspired musicians who, will transport us to faraway lands. Featuring resident act Sirena Riley and Tom Donald; Adriano Adewale (Friday 16th), Namvula (Friday 23rd), Muntu Valdo (Friday 30th), with Djs Africathy and Zezi Ifore.

Continue reading “The Afri-love Sundown Sessions: 3 intimate evenings of live music”

Goodbye Asilia: new business directions

Goodbye-Asilia-–-New-Business-Directions
 
This month marks 5 years of running my business. It's been a hell of a ride – high moments, challenging times and everything in between. All with a great business partner and an amazing team by my side. But now, it's time for a change …
 
A key part of the Asilia ethos has always been about following your heart and doing work you love. We’ve constantly strived to practice what we preach. That’s why we love working with other passionate people and why our self-directed projects are so important to us.
 
Over the past 5 years, these projects have evolved in different ways. Some have been more satisfying and successful than others – Afri-love, Afriapps and Black White Simple being the ones that have most resonated with the wider world.
 
 
Products of change
These projects, along with our experiences working with clients over the years, have taught us important lessons; opened up new opportunities we couldn’t have foreseen and; challenged and expanded our visions, when it comes to the contributions we want to bring to the world.
 
In being true to ourselves, our passions, our new circumstances and environments, we have decided on a new future for our professional paths.

Continue reading “Goodbye Asilia: new business directions”

EVENT: Home Affairs – a Cross-Cultural Installation

NOW Gallery Home Affairs Exhibition London Africa

 

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NOW Gallery will be celebrating London’s diverse creative landscape in a new cross-cultural installation, Home Affairs.

The exhibition is a collaboration between furniture designer Yinka Ilori, fashion designer Christine Mhando of London-based CHiCHiA and creative consultant Arieta Mujay. It features four theatrical, visually compelling conceptual spaces, brought to life with curated film, archival footage and performance. Framed by the language of traditional Nigerian & Swahili parables, the spaces will be filled with thought-provoking furniture, indigenous plants, designed objects, garments and wallpapers inspired by bespoke Khanga textiles. There will also be artwork by The installation will also be artwork by Jason Barka and Berjo Mouanga; a mural by myself, Lulu Kitololo; hand-carved wooden stools and bowls by artist Gary March and; on opening night, spoken word performances by the Bazaar Bohemian, of Project Tribe

Art director/brand consultant Ola Shobowale (aka @imustcreatenow) is also on-board, helping to bring it all together.

Dates: 20th August – 4th September 2015 
Venue: NOW Gallery, The Gateway Pavilions, Peninsula Square, Greenwich Peninsula, London SE10 0SQ  

 

Join us this Thursday evening for the NOW Later opening night

You can expect: 

Continue reading “EVENT: Home Affairs – a Cross-Cultural Installation”

Inspired: Tropical Flora from my East African Travels

 

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I recently returned from a wonderfully rejuvenating trip home to East Africa. Here’s the story of my trip, told through the tropical flora!

First stop was my hometown of Nairobi. I felt so lucky to wake up each morning to this – such a diverse, colourful collection of foliage. If you’ve been following my #plantsomethingdaily challenge, you know how much inspiration I derive from nature!

Continue reading “Inspired: Tropical Flora from my East African Travels”

Behind the Scenes with I Used To… Draw

Today I wanted to give you a behind the scenes look, from a shoot that Stacy Moore and I recently had a lot of fun with. Stacy is an educational psychologist and the founder of I used to…. We’re working together on a series of art workshops, I used to… draw, the first of which will take place at my studio, this Sunday 26th of July.

 

You don't have to be an artist to join us. In fact, the sessions are especially for those of us who've put aside that younger creative self. Here's a chance for that self to come out and play again!

Continue reading “Behind the Scenes with I Used To… Draw”

Plant Something Daily – June Favourites

 

Plant-Something-Daily-Art-Lulu-Kitololo-June-2015

Another month of my #plantsomethingdaily challenge has gone by and today, I will cross the halfway mark!

It’s been a great exercise in discipline, stretching my creativity and not getting hung up on trying to achieve perfection. It’s also been quite satisfying – just doodling without much restriction.

Continue reading “Plant Something Daily – June Favourites”