Dispatches from WOW 2012: Digital Tapestries

I was asked to participate in a WOW Bites session during the Southbank Centre's 2012 Women of the World Festival. Bites are short talks, inspiring ideas, achievements, obsessions, stories, performances, manifestos and more. I thought I'd share the essence of my bite with you.

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One of the most satisfying outcomes of spending so much time online is discovering interesting people doing exciting and amazing things. In my time internetting, I have discovered several women, around the world, using the digital space to tell their stories and through this: creating relationships that transcend barriers such as geographical distance and class; building supportive and collaborative networks and communities; and making things happen for themselves, for others and ultimately, for us all.

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TGIF! The best of 2011: great music discoveries

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Staff Benda Bilili. I highly recommend the film, Benda Bilili – a documentary about the groups rise from poverty and obscurity to international success. It's proper feel-good.

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The best of 2011: Afri-love commentary

Commentary highlights from the year spanning identity, culture, design, technology, entrepreneurship, natural hair and more …

Rise of the Afropolitan

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The V&A Afropolitans Friday Late event earlier this year was a major event. The "world's greatest museum of art and design" dedicated an evening to contemporary African and African Diaspora design and culture. Over 5,000 people attended proving that there are a lot of people who either identify with the term or are at least intrigued by it. Record label exec – Yemi Alade-Lawal, journalist, poet and writer – Tolu Ogunlesi, author – Hannah Pool, blogger – Minna Salami and I participated in a great panel discussion that went by way too quickly. Some great questions arose and I took the opportunity to expand on some of my thoughts on the blog: "Is there any use for the term 'Afropolitan'".


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The best of 2011: African and Africa-inspired fashion, interior and furniture design

Hope you've had a great holiday season so far. I thought I'd take these few days before 2012, to put together a recap of some favourite Afri-love posts (yours and mine) from the past year. Today – it's all about design.

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Interpretations of Africa: Football, Art and Design

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You have just a few more days to rush over to the Design Museum for Interpretations of Africa: Football Art and Design.

10 African artists from PUMA.Creative's Creative Africa Network were commissioned to design their national football team's kit. Countries represented include Algeria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Gabon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Namibia, Senegal, South Africa and Togo.

Read more about the exercise and the artists' inspiration over on Design Week. I was particularly amused by the apparent fact that initial designs were toned down due to FIFA regulations that "decorative elements are not allowed to dominate playing equipment."

Exhibition ends 30th November.

Images: Senegal shirt (left) and Namibia shirt, via Design Week (see more here).

Naana B: Spring/Summer 2012 collection & supporting rural communities in Ghana

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Fashion designer Naana B is back with a vibrant new collection for Spring/Summer 2012 and I'm loving the dresses!

Naana B works with the Rural Communities Empowerment Center (RCEC) in Ghana to produce her label. The charity is competing to be a recipient of the annual Star 100 New York Fundraiser and you can support them by casting your vote here by the 29th of November

If you missed Naana B's Afri-love interview from earlier this year, check it out here.

A good coat is easy to find with Sika Designs

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I'm just rediscovering Sika Designs after a few years and oh, have I been missing out! Beautifully-cut clothes in vibrant African prints. The company, headed by Phyllis Taylor, now also offers lines for the home, a bridal service and cute clothing for the little misses too.

Here are some classy jackets and coats that are on my wishlist :).

Browse more and purchase here.

TGIF! with Wanlov the Kubolor & Vevi the Squirrel

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Wanlov the Kubolor performed at the first Asabaako Music Festival event in March and in true unpredictable form, the UK-based artist walked to the event in Ghana! With one day left to support the Asabaako crowdfunding campaign, here's Wanlov's latest creation, Veverita to get you in the partying (and giving) mood …

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Part I of the Independence Day round-up: July

During this blog's first year, I endeavored to celebrate the independence days of African countries through creating a dedicated post (you can browse them via this link). I'm not doing that this year but, as several of those celebrations take place in July and August, I thought I'd do a round-up of highlights. I hope you enjoy it. Stay tuned for part 2 – August celebrations – next week.

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Ghana – 1st July

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Something for the pundits and technology geeks, something for the music-lovers and something for the fashionistas:
5 Reasons why Ghana is the next African App Powerhouse
Interview with lyrical genius M3NSA
Interview with Fashion Designer Naana B

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