Sifiso Shange is one of SA’s leading lights taking part in Design Joburg
A designer firmly rooted in his culture, Sifiso Shange’s merging of graphic contemporary elements and South African storytelling has placed him firmly on the map. We chatted to him ahead of participating in Design Joburg, which is taking place this weekend (24 to 26 May) at the Sandton Convention Centre.
Tell us what you will be exhibiting at Design Joburg 2019?
Isibaya and Uthando are the names of the two collections I will be showcasing at this year’s show within the SA Furniture Collective and SPA ZAR features.
Isibaya – The Kraal, is about a young man building his legacy for his future and family, and Uthando is about a young female finding love along her journey and living a beautiful happily ever after. Love is centrality to the two stories and is the special connection between them.
How has being involved in Design Joburg affected your approach?
The journey leading to the show has been beautiful and has taught me a lot about the preparations required to exhibit new work. Design Joburg’s support and guidance along the journey has been professional and responsive in making sure the process has been a success.
What is your take on the South African design landscape at the moment – what do you think we’re getting right?
I love the rich cultural diversity being expressed through South African design and how there is a growing number of collaborations between designers, creatives and artists, something I hope will result in innovative greatness and the expression of progressive African design.
SA has quite a collaborative design industry. Which SA designers do you admire – who would you like to work with?
Among others, I love the work being done by Dokter & Misses; Mpho Vackier of The Urbanative and Thabisa Mjo of Mash T Design Studio, for their vibrant African identity; fashion designer Sakhile ‘Sash’ Cebekhulu of Sash; Tonic Design for its modern soul; Neo Mahlangu – with whom I’d love to do something around storytelling; Nikki Schomer of Gold Bottom Pots for an Afro pot collab; and Wah Malimela of WMP.
What do you hope to gain from participating in Design Joburg?
I’ve got three goals for participating in the show: the telling of stories that are close to my heart to a wider audience; introducing myself and Afri Modern my brand as a modern storyteller; and building positive collaborative relationships that will progressively push the creative envelope as we move forward in South Africa design