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    Art: “Making Africa: A Continent of Contemporary Design”

    Cyrus Kabiru, Olleres meravella (C-Stunners) 2012. Sol Caribeño (Caribbean Sun). © Cyrus Kabiru.image by Miguel Luciano.

    Cyrus Kabiru, Olleres meravella (C-Stunners) 2012. Sol Caribeño (Caribbean Sun). © Cyrus Kabiru.image by Miguel Luciano.

    If you’re in Atlanta this winter, DO NOT miss “Making Africa: A Continent of Contemporary Design”, one of the most comprehensive exhibitions focusing on Contemporary African Design, at the High Museum of Art. The exhibition presents the work of over 120 African artists and designers, showing how design’s inextricable links to economic and political change in Africa.

    ‘The High’ will be the first venue in the United States to present this major touring exhibition, which offers a fresh look at African design through diverse works by artists from across the continent based there and in the Diaspora.

    The exhibition was curated by Amelie Klein, Curator at the Vitra Design Museum in Germany. Consulting Curator was Okwui Enwezor, Director of Haus der Kunst in Munich and Director of the 56th Venice Biennale in 2015. The exhibition also has an advisory committee made up of nine experts from cities around the world, such as Cape Town, Lagos, Dakar, London and Nairobi. Following its premiere at the Vitra Design Museum, the exhibition was presented at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao from autumn 2015 and has been touring various museums around Europe.

    Making_Africa_Look-12.-from-Birds-of-Paradise-987x1480

    From Duro Oluw’s ‘Birds of Paradise’ AW13/14 collection

    Ranging from playful to provocative to political, the works include sculpture, prints, fashion, furniture, film, photography, apps, maps, digital comics, and more.”Making Africa” features a myriad of work cutting across a wide variety of media, such as the eyewear sculptures of Kenyan artist Cyrus Kabiru, furniture by Cheick Diallo from Mali and the work of Mozambican photographer Mário Macilau and Nigerian J.D. ’Okhai Ojeikere. It shows the architecture of Francis Kéré, David Adjaye and Kunlé Adeyemi, cardboard city models by Bodys Isek Kingelez and animation art by South African Robin Rhode.

    Pierre-Christophe Gam, »The Kingdom of Taali M«, 2012

    Pierre-Christophe Gam, »The Kingdom of Taali M«, 2012

    To quote a review by Felicia Feaster for the Atlanta Journal Constitution, “Making Africa” feels less like a conventional museum exhibition and more like a proposition to occupy, momentarily, a head space. It asks you to get inside a place through a collection of its things…makes an ardent, convincing case for the many ways design shapes consciousness. Contained in the title is the idea of Africa as an identity in formation, and how the work of designers, artists, architects and filmmakers can define what Africa can be.

    Gonçalo Mabunda, »www.crise.com«, 2012, Thron/throne

    Gonçalo Mabunda, »www.crise.com«, 2012, Thron/throne

    For more information about this exhibition, please visit the Making Africa website.

    Illustration and limited edition poster design for "My Africa Is" by Sindiso Nyoni aka R!OT

    Illustration and limited edition poster design for “My Africa Is” by Sindiso Nyoni aka R!OT

    Words: Daphne Kasambala

    Lagos Fashion & Design Week – Day 3 Highlights

    We’ve been salivating over the fabulous looks being paraded on the LFDW 2015 runway this week. Day 3 did not disappoint, with stunning collections from a number of great brands, including veteran LFDW participant Eki Orleans, who showcased her ‘Identity’ AW15 collection. Identity is the product of a collaboration with ethical brand Jose Hendo, and definitely worth seeing, especially since their fabrics are designed in-house, each inspired by head designer Hazel’s life experiences living in Africa and Europe. Mai Atafo brought some great power outfits that complemented the menswear part of the collection (and we’ll be bringing you a special menswear highlights post anon). Stand-out favourite for us from Day 3 was swimwear brand Andrea Iyamah, whose strong, eccentric prints and retro-inspired lines were like a breath of fresh air. It’s about time we started seeing more swimwear brands coming..

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    Lagos Fashion & Design Week – Day 1 Highlights

    It’s the fifth anniversary of the Lagos Fashion and Design Week (LFDW), a fashion event running from 28 to 31 October, 2015, whose reputation is growing on the continent, attracting top international and local Nigerian designers of the highest calibre. Organisers say the platform aims to drive the Nigerian and ultimately, the African fashion industry, by bringing together buyers, consumers and the media to view the current collections of African designers and reposition fashion as a useful tool for commerce and creativity in Nigeria. Take a look at highlights from Day 1 (Photos courtesy of LFDW2015)

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