The exhibition will feature the work of over 170 designers and craft producers from the Western Cape, exploring local design sensibility.
Our spectacular coastal landscape, the perpetual sounds of the sea, the rush of the wind, the complexity of the city, our diverse heritage and identities, the busy harbour, and the elements of nature – sea, light, animals, shells and fynbos – provides a contemporary living context for MAKE IT NEW, an exhibition showcasing significant objects produced in the Western Cape.
The MAKE IT NEW exhibition, presented by the Cape Craft and Design Institute (CCDI) and sponsored by the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sports (DCAS) and Cape Town Design, will explore relationships and connections across time.
This starts with an exploration of how traces of our indigenous pasts and our global connections have shaped innovation and transformation; processes such as communication, the settlements of people, and the legacies of sea travel that marks the Cape as part of a network of ports have formed a locale for making beautiful things. Over 100 images from the Western Cape Museums’ archives and objects from antiquity and tradition will be counterpoised with contemporary design objects, linking functionality, material or making methods. From the earliest human settlement, tool creation and body adornment, visitors will move through time to the finely crafted furniture and ceramics, and innovation found in the repurposing of materials.
The exhibition, featuring the work of over 170 designers and craft producers from all over the Western Cape, will lead visitors on to a striking showcase of contemporary items, exploring local design sensibility, and through the disruptive layout and product selection it will prompt reflection on the nature of the Western Cape’s current design handwriting and the fusion – or not – of cultures and influences.
This contemporary showcase will also explore how the Cape’s creative producers of today demonstrate design thinking, innovation and problem solving in a variety of ways, and how they are re-visiting the long established in a totally new way and making it new.
These contemporary designers and craft producers, like artists and artisans over the ages, have drawn from what has come before and the context of their world, to innovate and create something new. While the phrase make it new is most synonymous with the Modernists' reaction to tradition in the first part of the 20th Century, the deep roots of seeing, learning and doing, on reflecting on the past and present world, and the discovery of new sources of inspiration and new ways of expression are indeed a mark of a universal human creative process.
The CCDI was set up in 2001 to support the needs of creative businesses in the Western Cape, and to grow the region’s craft and design sector. A not-for-profit company, the CCDI is a joint initiative of the Western Cape Government and the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT). In 2012 the Western Cape Government’s Department of Economic Development and Tourism (DEDAT) collaborated with the CCDI and other key role-players to develop a Design Strategy to unlock innovation in the province. The CCDI has been tasked with driving the implementation of the strategy with a wide range of stakeholders. Find out more at www.ccdi.org.za
Visit the MAKE IT NEW- see.learn.do exhibition from the 15-19 October at Cape Town Stadium.