Johannesburg's Tshepo Mokholo has always been inspired by architecture and design. He trained as an architect at the University of Pretoria's School of Architecture and has since lived and worked in Johannesburg, Durban and Kigali.
He was chosen as one of eleven fellows for the African Design Centre's (ADC) inaugural fellowship. Based in Kigali, Rwanda, the fellows worked on a variety of projects that increase in scale as the fellowship progresses. From activities that explore furniture and product design to architecture, every aspect is designed to encourage a sense of curiosity and creativity amongst fellows and provide a holistic perspective from which to look at the future of design in Africa.
While at the ADC, Mokholo spent time exploring how new layers of creativity and ingenuity can be applied to existing cultural practices like pottery, weaving and woodwork, to add to the evolutionary process of making, and giving them a greater degree of value in a contemporary setting.
He is also a firm believer that design can and should have a positive impact on communities. This, he says, can be done through incorporating those communities in the design process. "By harnessing their knowledge and skills, one can only create better design that is both appreciated and leaves a more profound impact. Through architecture, we can share skills and knowledge, and provide employment in the process, feeding back into local economies."