Maker Faire Africa Workshop
at Afrofuture

| 4 comments

Visitors to the Afrofuture exhibition in Milan built light-up glasses from recycled materials at a workshop organised by Maker Faire Africa (+ movie).

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

The workshop was a taster for the larger two to three day events that Maker Faire Africa put on in African cities for local makers to exhibit and develop their designs for gadgets or products.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

"The concept is that people come together to show their ad hoc inventions that they've made in their garages, basements or studios," said Jennifer Wolfe of Maker Faire Africa, who organises the workshops.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

"In Africa, the inventions tend to be focussed on items that solve immediate and fundamental needs - issues such as agriculture, health and electricity."

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

At Afrofuture, a series of African-oriented design talks and activities, designer Cyrus Nganga from Kenya helped visitors create their own versions of his C-Stunner glasses.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

The decorative glasses are built from old spectacle frames and recycled wire, metal or other found materials.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

Technology expert David Olaniyan was on hand to help integrate arduino microcontroller circuit boards with the designs so LEDs could be programmed to flash.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

"We're trying to bring together some of these emerging technologies with grass root strategies, which you need to couple togther in a place like Africa," Wolfe told Dezeen.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

Maker Faire is a global initiative that runs public workshops for designers to showcase their inventions and Maker Faire Africa has amassed a community of makers across the continent that have presented over 400 inventions.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

Wolfe presented other projects championed by Maker Faire Africa during the event, including a generator than can produce six hours of electricity with one litre of urine and conductive woven textiles.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

Maker Faire Africa has been running for five years and operates in Ghana, Egypt, Kenya and Nigeria, and has introduced 3D printers to Cairo and Lagos as part of its programme.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

The organisation aims to help designers market their products and find funding, as well as introduce them to technologies that could make their items more useful and consumer friendly.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

The Afrofuture exhibition took place at the La Rinascente department store in Milan during the city's design week last month and was curated by Beatrice Galilee.

Maker Faire Africa Workshop at Afrofuture

Upcycling discarded materials in African design was one of the themes that emerged from our Dezeen and MINI World Tour reports from Cape Town - watch Ravi Naidoo explain the movement in our movie.

See more architecture and design from Africa »
See all our coverage of Milan 2013 »

  • Kelly Berman

    Spotted a little inaccuracy in this story: Cyrus Nganga is from Nairobi, Kenya, not Nigeria.

    • Dan/Dezeen

      Thanks for bringing this to our attention Kelly, I've amended that now.

      Dan/Dezeen

  • http://www.pasinga.com PASiNGA

    That’s awesome – very creative and it looks like fun.

  • bonsaiman

    Are you serious – people still consider turning trash into trash “recycling” or “design”? An exercise like this is pointless outside of elementary schools and the people seem a bit grown up in the pics. Why am I bothering to leave a comment?