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Cape Town’s emerging creatives showcase at the Design Lab

The incubator store at the V&A Waterfront’s Watershed provides the opportunity for designers to make their mark

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By Amy Saunders | January 14, 2022 | Art

A collaboration between the Craft and Design Institute (CDI) the V&A Waterfront and Business and Arts South Africa (BASA) has given Cape Town-based creatives a chance to showcase their work at the Design Lab.

On an annual basis, this incubator store based at the V&A Waterfront’s Watershed gives artists and designers a chance to get their products into the retail market. At the end of the year, these businesses will be able to start standalone stores at the Watershed and the Design Lab will then allow new designers to break into the industry.

This year, the Design Lab will showcase handmade leather jewellery from Nondwe Nyathi, bespoke linen and homeware from Jenine Allchin, and work by several creatives from Our Workshop, which is an NGO in Langa which empowers the community with creative and upcycling skills.

As you peruse through the Design Lab you will come across an array of custom-painted and embroidered clothing from Anele Nono, wall hangings by Malibongwe Nohesi, wooden bowls and platters by Ado Ludidi, upcycled e-waste jewellery and sculpture by Sizwe Shumane, beaded candelabras and artful wire work by Richard Mandongwe and upcycled pendant lamps and wall hangings by Heath Nash. Learn more about few of the creatives showcasing their work at the Design Lab in 2022.

Anele Nono

Anele Nono is a designer and founder of the creative denim brand Jeanius Platform. The Langa native is trained in digital design and mural art and works with the Our Workshop team at the Guga S'thebe Cultural Centre.

Richard Mandongwe

Self-proclaimed as one of the best crafters in Cape Town, Richard Mandongwe is an artist and craftsman from Zengeza, Zimbabwe. With the help of Cape Town creative Heath Nash and his work with Our Workshop in Langa, he has increased his skills and experience in artfully crafting wire and beaded sculptures.

Jenine Allchin

Through her brand “doek SA” Jenine Allchin designs and makes stunning homeware and linens using creations she styles and photographs. These include tablecloths, runners, napkins and aprons for now and she plans on extending her range soon.

Sizwe Shumane

Creative entrepreneur Sizwe Shumane gives trash new life by moulding discarded plastic into pieces of wildlife art and more.