Why Africa is Now

What's so special about African creativity? An architect, fashion designer, lighting designer, inventor and product designer share their insights.

Part of the Project

The Africa is Now exhibition at Design Indaba Expo 2014 sought to capture a wide breadth of creative work currently being produced on the continent – from architecture, furniture and functional handmade items to fashion, technology and sustainable design. Running through the exhibition as a common thread was that all the products and projects were designed in response to specific local conditions: African solutions to African problems.

In this video, Design Indaba interviews five of the designers whose work was represented on the exhibition to talk African creativity, challenges and opportunities on the continent. 

"African creativity can definitely change the way we see things and reinterpret our purpose as designers, says Ivorian architect, Issa Diabaté. "What is most important for us is to show that we can do something that on only applies to Africa but to the rest of the world. To me African creativity is the creativity of the next century." 

African creativity can create serious social change, says Ghanaian fashion designer, Abrima Erwiah.

"Africans are problem solvers at heart. We look at a problem, see what is available and that is how we solve it," says Oliver Brain, designer of the Street Sleeper.