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Phenomenal young designers packing their bags for China

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Four young designers will soon be jetting off to China on an all-expenses paid exchange programme.

This initiative forms part of Unesco’s Creative Cities Network, says the City of Cape Town.

The young designers were selected through a rigorous selection process by the Cape Town Unesco Creative Cities Network Steering Committee. The committee includes representatives from the City of Cape Town, the Craft and Design Institute, Western Cape Provincial Government, and the UCT Design School. 

Primrose Chimhanda is a 28-year-old Surface Designer who runs her own small business. The youngest of the four, 22-year-old Gytha Lategan, is an Industrial Design student at the Cape Penninsula University of Technology. Scott Lenton is 29 years old and is a Candidate Architect with ARG Design. Twenty-five-year-old Sean Meyer is a young architect with Meyer & Associates.

All four were chosen to participate in the Wuhan programme, which specifically focuses on how Industrial, Surface and Urban Design can improve people’s lives.

Picture: City of Cape Town

The young designers said the opportunity would help grow their design practice, life experience and global network in immeasurable ways. They are extremely excited and look forward to the journey ahead.

Each one has a specific need in expanding their knowledge within their field.

Cape Town and Wuhan, both classified as design cities, are collaborating on the Wuhan African Young Designers Training Programme. This initiative gives life to Unesco’s Creative Cities Networks. It offers the designers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to participate in a high-impact, design focused learning experience. 

As part of the collaboration, the Wuhan Design City partners will fund the travel and training costs of the four chosen designers, to be held in Wuhan, China from 28 October to 11 November 2019.

On behalf of the City of Cape Town,  Alderman James Vos, Mayoral Committee Member for Economic Opportunities and Asset Management, congratulated Primrose, Gytha, Scott and Sean on being selected to participate in this incredible programme. “We are proud that you will be our design ambassadors.”

The Unesco Creative Cities Network has an objective to foster international cooperation between cities committed to investing in creativity as a driver for sustainable urban development, social inclusion and cultural vibrancy.

Launched in 2004, the network consists of 180 cities from five continents. “I am proud to say Cape Town is the first city in Africa to be named a Unesco City of Design that is recognised for its contribution to local and global design,” said Self.

Cape Town is fast emerging as the focal point of design activity on the African continent. In my view, creative industries and design in particular, can make Cape Town based products and services more competitive locally and globally.

As such, design, a component of the creative and cultural sector, has been identified by the City as a tool for unlocking the value of innovation and a competitive advantage to help drive economic growth.

“The value of the creative industries cannot be pigeon-holed into the narrow confines of economic impact alone but has a significant and broader societal value that helps us navigate the rich territories of our heritage, values and culture.”

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