Studying at the AAA School of Advertising has given me the opportunity to go to the Design Indaba Expo for the last three years. Each year I am blown away by the creativity and innovation that moves through the veins of Cape Town, its surrounding areas and the rest of South Africa. What was most interesting about this year's event was that it had a much more "personal" feel to it.
David Holgreaves of snapp Design with 'Engage' wine rack.
Every item was something that you could purchase, either at the indaba or from somewhere else at another point [physical/online shops - managing ed
]. Everywhere you looked there were colours, designs, patterns, textures and smells to grab your senses and take them on a little bit of a journey. Back to the basics?
I will admit that I did expect to see a far more digital feel to the 2012 expo, but it almost felt as though exhibitors were going back to the basics (apart from an interactive big-screen TV, which allowed people to be seen as though they were on the moon or touching wild animals). For some this may have been perfect, but for those who were waiting for, and wanting, something "wow" - there wasn't really much. [I beg to differ - it was about going back to artisanal, individually hand-produced, handcrafted, art and craft, rather than mass-produced, machine-produced objects with no soul - managing ed
Centre-petal light designs by Micah Joel Chisholm, one of the emerging designers represented through the Emerging Creatives sector programme, sponsored by the Design Indaba Trust.
It must be said that, once again, Grolsch was on top form, interacting with people milling around, as well as a competition where you could design a glass and stand a chance of winning major prizes.
Don't get me wrong, a few other stores were interactive too and definitely put a lot of effort into making sure they were attractive to the hustle and bustle of bodies moving past them. Avoid the students
A word of advice, though: try to go when the schools and universities aren't there, because it becomes uncomfortable and incredibly loud. Also, don't go too late, because then there won't be anything left. Don't worry about taking too much money for food, as the food and beverages are reasonably priced.
I will always love the Design Indaba, regardless of what is there, simply because it reminds me of the talent that is out there. I believe that a true lover of art, design and innovation can see that in anything. It will definitely be worth going to again next year. Photos by Simone Puterman