Design Indaba announced its first batch of unmissable speakers. Every year, the creative industries hold their collective breath for the unveiling of Design Indaba’s conference speaker list. Consistently dedicated to sharing ideas that matter and building a better world through creativity, Design Indaba has brought a slew of exciting presenters to the stage over the years.
Preeminent leaders in their respective fields who work across genres as diverse as business product design, costume design, performance art, architecture and more allow us to reimagine a world uplifted and transformed through the intervention of creative thinking.
Past speakers include artist and producer Brian Eno, architect Dame Zaha Hadid, film director Wanuri Kahiu, designer Thomas Hetherwick, fashion designer Laduma Ngxokolo, and advertising maverick David Droga. Design Indaba is celebrating a quarter-century next year and founder Ravi Naidoo is as committed as ever to advancing social progress through design activism, focusing on innovations and solutions for both Africa and the rest of the world.
An electrifying assemblage of creatives will be speaking at the silver jubilee of the Design Indaba, which runs from February 26 to 28, 2020 – the first batch of speakers that will bring new purpose to the stage has just been announced. Meet three of the visionaries that will change the way you think this summer – and celebrate the return of ever-popular futurist, Li Edelkoort.
Nassia Inglessis creates kinetic installations that transform to act as a physical megaphone to human presence. Greek artist, engineer and designer Nassia disobeys the notion that architecture should be static – a revolutionary cognitive leap that propels her into the forefront of experimental and experiential design. Holding an MEng Honours from Oxford University and having continued her research in The Royal College of Art, Imperial College London and MIT Media Lab, Nassia invents direct public provocations that reimagine the architecture of matter through tactile ‘lenses’. These ‘lenses’ seek to evoke new portals of perception and interactions with our physical reality. These manifest in extraordinary kinetic and immersive installations; live experimentations of what she calls an ‘augmented materiality’ – a reality that steps away from experiencing the world through a headset.
Kinya Tagawa is at the forefront of design innovation, and it’s his contention that technology needs the human touch to change society for the better. Technology that is neither useful nor beautiful will not last, he believes–and his futuristic experimental design brings fresh artistry to the engineering discipline. His design firm Takram’s ‘products of the future’ are making people sit up and take notice. These include the LEDIX (a visualisation of Japanese economy traffic), HAKUTO FLIGHT MODEL (a moon rover prototype), Home Shrine (an installation designed for Swarovski that allows a crystal to mediate between human and machine intelligence), Shenu (a concept for future water bottles) and a user interface for Toyota’s concept car NS4.
Futurist Li Edelkoort returns for Design Indaba’s 25th anniversary celebration – as part of Design Indaba Festival 2020, she will be hosting her wildly popular seminars in Johannesburg and Cape Town on February 25th and 29th respectively. This year, Li will share her insights on the green revolution as well as food as the newest design discipline. Li’s annual trend seminar usually sells out in a hurry, so get your tickets now.
The Design Indaba Conference and Festival runs at the Artscape Theatre Centre in Cape Town from February 26 to 29, 2020, and via simulcast in Cape Town, Johannesburg, Durban and Potchefstroom.
Booking is via Webtickets.
Picture: Design Indaba

Article written by

Lucinda Dordley

Lucinda is a hard news writer who occasionally dabbles in lifestyle writing, and recent journalism graduate. She is a proud intersectional feminist, and is passionate about actively creating a world which is free of discrimination and inequality.