“Ten” means different things to different people – and it’s usually significant. Possibly it’s built into our very anatomy, for counting up to 10 on the fingers of our hands; it’s the basis of our decimal system; the official residence of the British Prime Minister; and, burnt into the collective male memory, the movie sporting Bo Derek with braided hair and a memorable swimsuit.
It was also the tenth anniversary of the Design Indaba Conference, an event rated 10 out of 10: for speakers at the peak of their diverse professions, to a product Expo that showed South African design had truly evolved to new heights. Icons of design, such as Milton Glaser and Massimo Vignelli, held audiences spellbound while rising stars such as Jaime Hayon and the Swedish all-girl design group Front added their fresh insights, all talking 10 to the dozen.
It was clear that the concept of design has long surpassed a pretty touch to a household item. The world is in a serious state that calls for a radical divergence from current products and practices. Be it the car you drive, the home you heat or the packaging you toss out, new solutions have to be designed.
And it was reassuring to know that there are such experts on hand to help work towards solutions. Speakers such as architect
Cameron Sinclair and futurist Alex Steffen spoke from the heart and from the trenches, easily crossing the divide from rural outposts to a conference judged the best in the world.
There’s clearly lots to look forward to – and one of the highlights will be the FIFA World Cup, taking place in South Africa in 2010. Three local agencies were asked to present at the Indaba on Fan Fests, parties hosted within close proximity of the football stadia, with live broadcasts, enabling home fans and visitors from around the world to share a unique experience at the FIFA World Cup™. We dedicate a 36-page spread in this issue to show off their concepts. Clearly, we can look forward to another decade of great design where local is definitely lekker. - Judy Bryant