For the fourth consecutive year, It’s Nice That has media partnered with Design Indaba. We will be delivering news, highlights, interviews and reactions direct from each day of the three-day conference from Cape Town. This year promises to be bigger and better, with fashion designer Selly Raby Kane leading the art direction. The event will be live broadcast via simulcast to a number of South African cities, allowing each presentation to resonate around the country. Design Indaba will also be hosting the first-ever European Simulcast at ECAL in Lausanne, Switzerland.
It’s tricky to pick out just five speakers from the all-star line-up at this year’s Design Indaba, but someone’s got to do it. In no particular order, here are five speakers who we can’t wait to see in Cape Town.
Swedish designer Marcus Engman has worked with Ikea since the early 80s, when he was a student. Now, after a brief stint running his own retail agency, Marcus returned to IKEA, where he is now head of design. Mixing high-end design values with affordability and a desire to surprise, Marcus is devoted to democratising everyday design. At this years Design Indaba, Marcus will meet with a set of designers to make IKEA’s first exclusive, all-African collection, which will launch in 2019.
Artist, NYFC Fellow and NEW INC member, Brooklyn-based Ekene Ijeoma’s socially-focused interdisciplinary work across art and design uses data to translate overlooked facts into informed feelings. Ekene has featured in many a “Ones to Watch” list for his brilliant projects which include The Ethnic Filter, a webcam that puts you face-to-face with the lack of diversity in design, Heartfelt, a public art work on social polarisation which asks two or more people to pocket their smartphones and join hands to illuminate New York’s Times Square, and, in a similar vein, Look Up, a participatory public mobile phone app based on the distraction of smart phones and their effect on the user’s street awareness. The app encourages smartphone users to look up from their phone screens and engage with their surroundings.
Since 2008, “punk” illustrator, art director and graphic designer Kate Moross has been pushing the boundaries of design, bringing bold splashes of colour and injecting the full force of her lively personality into the industry in the process. Since then, Kate has set up her own studio, Studio Moross, which works across commercial projects, branding and art direction. From music videos to murals, textiles to magazine covers, Kate has become a powerfully disruptive voice in the fast-paced design world.
Climate-obsessed artist Olafur Eliasson came to our attention way back in 2003, when he installed The Weather Project at the Tate Modern’s vast Turbine Hall. Since then, Olafur has created a host of projects in public spaces, including Ice Watch, for which melting icebergs from Greenland were brought to Copenhagen and Paris, and Your Rainbow Panorama, a circular walkway made of coloured glass which ran 150 metres around ARoS Museum in Denmark. For five years, Olafur held a post as professor, leading the Institute for Spatial Experiments at the Berlin University of the Arts, and in 2012, with the help of engineer Frederik Ottesen, he founded Little Sun, a project which provides solar-powered light to communities which do not have access to electricity.
TL Uglow, also known as Tea, is creative director at Google’s Sydney-based Creative Lab, where she works with global cultural and creative organisations to identify points at which technology and the arts meet, including digital books, augmented audio, proximity tech and non-linear storytelling.