Where are we going?

What does it mean to be an Afrofuturist? What does the future (both real and imagined) hold for the continent? We look into future gazing designers in Africa.

If you ask a designer in Africa if they identify with the word Afrofuturist, most of them will say no. “I’m a futurist, not an Afrofuturist”, the term is more useful for those in the diaspora than for those living in Africa. 

“The internet is bursting with the word ‘Afrofuturism’,” says the Kenyan digital artist known simply as Jepchumba. It conjures up both utopian and dystopian images of cyberpunk tribal warriors and aliens swarming onto the Serengeti that have a place only in fantasy. The problem is that it’s become a catchy way to describe anything involving digital technology in Africa.

Technology is more and more integrated into daily life and becoming a part of the progression of culture. Artists across the continent are engaging with digital mediums to help them create. 

The featured image is of Senegalese electronic music producer Ibaaku, taken by photographer Jean-Baptiste Joire