Xhosa Charity Chair auctioned for South Africa

by Rosanne van Tilburg on December 20, 2010

Last week, all the AIT Charity Chairs, including our design ‘Xhosa’, were sold in auction in Berlin, with all the proceedings going to the Guga S´Thebe cultural centre and AIDS orphanage in the Langa Township in Cape Town, South Africa. For the Charity Chair project, an initiative by the German Architecture Magazine AIT, 120 architects and designers from all over Europe were asked to redesign the ONO chair by Matthias Weber, and GROUP A was one of them. Because we could not attend the auction in person, we were asked to enter a short video in support of our chair:

As GROUP A partner Maarten van Bremen explains in this video, the patterns we used for the perforations in the ‘Xhosa’ chair are inspired by patterns used in traditional Xhosa face painting. These patterns are still widely used in South Africa, including in the Langa Township. By using these patterns in our design, we felt we went one step further than just making a contribution to the lives of the people in the Langa Township, because the people of the Langa Township themselves contributed to the design of our Charity Chair by inspiring us with their rich cultural heritage. 

We would like to thank photographer Stanislav Solntsev for the beautiful picture of the South-African girl with traditional make-up 

Stanislav Solntsev | Xhosa | AIT Charity Chair

image: www.stanislavsolntsev.com

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