I was browsing Design*Sponge when I saw these beautiful Boucherouite rugs from Morocco. Made from leftover scraps of fabric and other materials, as wool became more rare and expensive, the result is spontaneous and unique designs. Read more about them and see more images here.
This reminds me of a great Ted Talk where researcher Charles Leadbeater talks about how innovation usually takes place where resources are too scarce for traditional solutions to work*. Afrigadget is another great example of the power of ingenuity where resources aren't always abundant.
*It's a fantastic talk about reimagining education and I highly recommend giving it a view!
Images from Brix Picks
I've decided to start posting a review of the past week's activity on the blog. Last week was quite a busy one, with record hits (for which I thank you all!). With 3 independence days on the continent, it was indeed a celebratory week. Unfortunately, Nigeria's 50th anniversary of independence was marred by the Abuja bomb attacks. Resilience is a great word to describe the colourful nation of Nigeria and here's a fitting article by Bilkisu Labaran, on the depth of meaning carried in that one word, "Naija".
A round-up of posts incase you missed any:
A huge thanks to you for taking the time to read and share comments, facebook appreciation and tweet love. Remember, you can also get updates via facebook, twitter and you can also subscribe to the Afri-love feed.
Feedback is incredibly useful to me so, please drop me a line with any comments, suggestions, ideas etc.
This coming week, look out for:
- Quote of the week
- Juicy visual inspiration from Morocco
- An interview with a pair of entrepreneurs with big plans for Africa's music industry
- Reflections on the value of taking the easy way out
- TGIF! The East African edition of Classic African tunes
And possibly more, we'll see how the week goes…
Have a fantastic week! Be proud and be inspired.
The anticipated Maker Faire Africa takes place this Friday and Saturday in Nairobi, Kenya.
The programme sounds exciting with Solar Makers, Crafting Peace and Business 101 workshops, along with Show & Tell sessions, live matching as well as an exhibit and unconference that run throughout both of the days. The ethos of the event is captured well in the following excerpt from the program:
"The spirit of Making is all about breaking things apart to better undertand them (and build something even more useful), so that’s what we want you to do with our faire: make it what you need."
Can't make it to Nairobi this week? You can still help Match a Maker and give inventors an opportunity to take their work to the next level.
Be sure to check out this interview with the Maker Faire Africa founder, Emeka Okafor. Maker Faire Africa aims to question: “How do we regain our creativity? How do we redefine what we mean by a society that is advanced?”
Indeed that's the kind of interrogation Afri-love exists to champion: how do we use our unique gifts to chart our own paths, appropriate to our unique needs and aspirations?
Images above by Erik Hersman (aka @whiteafrican) except for the fan image which is courtesy of Maneno.org. For more pictures, check out Maker Faire Africa on Flickr.
I recently purchased Cheikh-Lo's Lamp Fall album – which is brilliant by the way – and one thing that makes the experience complete is the beautiful album art and design. There are a lot of African albums with great art and design and, whether the artists and designers themselves are African or not, the inspiration clearly is. Here's a celebration of that inspiration with just a sprinkling of some great album covers.
Continue reading “African album art”
Interesting article by Bruce Nussbaum discussing humanitarian design and imperialism.
"But should we take a moment now that the movement is gathering speed to ask whether or not American and European designers are collaborating with the right partners, learning from the best local people, and being as sensitive as they might to the colonial legacies of the countries they want to do good in. Do designers need to better see themselves through the eyes of the local professional and business classes who believe their countries are rising as the U.S. and Europe fall and wonder who, in the end, has the right answers? Might Indian, Brazilian and African designers have important design lessons to teach Western designers?"
And a response to his article suggests:
"The worst thing to do patronize low-income earners by succumbing to nationalistic and inward-looking design. Lets keep sharing, exchanging, and working together and enable the best designs to play out, regardless of origin."
Thanks to @whiteafrican for tweeting the links!
Johannesburg's Apartheid Museum, is a must-visit if you're ever in town. The visitor is guided through 20th century South Africa in a series of 22 individual exhibition areas – each a different chapters of the apartheid story.
After my visit a few years ago, I was left with two particular impressions:
Continue reading “SA week: Apartheid Museum”
They've nailed it on the head: "a better world through creativity". Yes, I may be biased but I'm clearly not the only one who believes in the power of creativity to create a better future. Design Indaba, founded in 1995, has been acting upon this belief and demonstrating just how design, and creativity in general, can drive an economic revolution in South Africa. With their annual conference, an acclaimed international design event, they bring together creatives from all sectors – graphic design, advertising, film, music, fashion design, industrial design, architecture, craft, visual art, new media, publishing, broadcasting and performing arts.
Continue reading “SA week: Design Indaba”