Jozi Gem IMBENGE 2016

Jozi Gem 2016

All around Johannesburg there is a presence of street artists. During this project you will choose the best of the street artists and work with a select few to uplift and empower them to potentially launch a design product line which could feed into 1200 Nando’s restaurants nationally and internationally.

You are tasked to source street artists from the street community of artists around Johannesburg. Some of the main markets to look for quality street artists would be the Rosebank Crafters Market, William Nichol Market and the Crafters Shop below Moyo’s at Zoo Lake. You may include graffiti artists, wire sculptors, wood carvers, metal workers i.e. basically anyone who makes and sells art in and from the streets of Johannesburg. This means that of all the street art out there, you have to find the best artists and the best art. You will then have to ask the artist if they would like to be involved in this project (Remember GDC policy on ethics).

Aims and focus of the project:
Each group has to design and develop a product that can be applied in the restaurant/retail industry. The product design has to be developed to a point where the street artist can produce a prototype.

The presentations will be made before corporate funders and your design and presentation could lead to launching a career for the street artists.


This initiative serves to uplift an individual artist by highlighting their talents to create unique products for the retail environment by providing a stable platform for them and other artists to grow individually as well as collectively on a social and economical front. In order to facilitate sustainable and responsible design it is important to consider the material and the process of the artist. By seeking out artists that fit within the scope of sustainable and responsible design we will be able to create a platform through which the artist can thrive.


Located in the out-lying areas of Northern Zululand, Ilala Weavers are specialist crafters. Being an isolated community their craft and skill had been undiscovered for decades. Chief Gumede still oversees the weaving urban Kwa-Zulu Natal now buying the crafts through him as he heads the community. This community upliftment has served as motivation and just reward for something that has been part of the community for as long as some the Elders have been alive.

• Due to the very high price of copper, weavers are now using an annealed steel core wire that looks just like telephone wire. • The wire they use is manufactured in special colors for the weavers using some recycled and all lead free materials. The wire is manufactured in South Africa.

Our aim is to uplift society by introducing opportunities that will result in a positive impact individually and collectively. In addition, these opportunities need to produce both economic and environmental relief.
Our objective is to design a unique product using materials that are cost effective and readily available which can be integrated into the skill set of the artist in a seamless manner. The product will need to be multifaceted in terms of function along with enabling the artist to push boundaries with their craft.

By utilizing the washing machine door, it acts as a frame to house lighting fixtures as well as the weaved basket or bowl. The glass bowl will act as a template for the weavers as well as being a reflective surface for the light fixtures to accent the weaved basket.

In order to fulfil the environmental impact of the product, recycling of materials is fundamental.
In addition the recycled objects are cost effective if not free to the public. We have focused our intention to appliances and namely the washing machine and its door.
Artists have already designed other products using this method.