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A CREATIVE REVIEW Issue 48 March/April 2010 R150/year

32

24

30

Troika, the multidisciplinary art and design practice, have found remarkable outlets for their technology-driven social interventions

Sean Metelerkamp hits the perfect beat, but does not provide any answers

The Darwin Chair is a testament to Sagmeister’s ability to rethink the ordinary and produce groundbreaking results

a curious cover Cover printed on ArjoWiggins Curious Metal Iced Silver supplied by Antalis. Curious Metal offers a wide spectrum of colours, all with intense reflective metallics

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 1


Design your way to The Big Apple!* Entries open!

BREINSTORM21072009

Work produced between 1 July 2008 & 30 June 2010 and printed on exclusive Antalis papers are eligible for entry in the following categories:

Cards Bound Brochures Unbound Brochures Corporate Identity Open Category Digital Category Annual Reports Student Category √

All entries need to reach Antalis by 23 July 2010

Visit antalis.co.za for information or request your entry kit for all competition details at aod@antalis.co.za * The Antalis Art of Design Grand Prix winner gets a trip to New York worth R50 000!

BLOEMFONTEIN O51 447 8681 • BOTSWANA +OO 267 391 2139 • CAPE TOWN 021 959 9600 • DURBAN 031 714 4000 • EXPORTS +27 11 688 6000 011 688 6000 • PIETERMARITZBURG 033 386 1078 • PORT ELIZABETH 041 486 2020 • PRETORIA 012 379 0060 2 ENJIN MAR/APRJOHANNESBURG 2010


contents

click

48

blogs

ENJIN BLOGGERS.........................................................4

DIRECTORY

CLASSIFIEDS...................................................................6

PLAKBOOK

ORANGE GROVE ART FAIR.......................................10

comment

WATCHING A TRAIN WRECK.................................14

AGENDA

HOT....................................................................................16 INSPIRATION.................................................................18 WIRED...............................................................................22

WORK

SEAN METELERKAMP HITS THE BEAT................24 THEM AND US...............................................................26 INNOCENT MUKHELI................................................28 DARWIN CHAIR............................................................30

AGENCY

TROIKA.............................................................................32

IMAGE

HALAAL ART..................................................................36

STORE

DESIGN IS A GOOD IDEA..........................................42

POSTERS

2010 POSTERS.................................................................46

DESIGN

3D PRINTING MACHINE............................................50

REVIEW

DESIGN INDABA POSTMORTEM............................56 ACCOUNTABLE AD AGENCY..................................60 COLD CASE.....................................................................62 OPEN WINDOW PROFILE..........................................64 PHOTOGRAPHERS’ CARDS.......................................67

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 3


enjin.co.za/blog

blogs sarah britten advertising

Sarah Britten is Strategic Planning Director at Y&R Joburg. With a doctorate from Wits University, Sarah has a fascination with nationalism and identity and has published many opinions. In her spare time, she writes books on South African insults. Currently working on a third book, she has confirmed that Julius Malema gets a chapter all to himself.

guest post erika koutny stu stobbs digital

Stu Stobbs is Creative Partner at Studio4332. He started copywriting in the 90s after a failed drag-queen career. He is cofounder of Studio4332, a new age communications agency that changes consumer behaviour through any medium necessary. He has won and judged numerous local and international awards, but thinks they are a load of money-making, egoinflating kak – and so keeps entering them. He has an honours degree in dramatic art, loves riding his bike, patting his dogs and cooking with his supermodel girlfriend.

sean o’toole art

Sean O’Toole is a journalist and writer. Currently editor of Art South Africa, a quarterly print magazine focusing on contemporary South African and African art, he also writes a weekly column on photography for the Sunday Times and a biweekly art column for the Financial Mail. His journalism has appeared in, among other titles, BBC Focus on Africa, Colors, Creative Review, Eye, frieze, GEO, ID and Kyoto Journal.

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I guess if you really take Jack Parow at his word, Erika Koutny must be part of the cool crowd. After all, she’s had work published in One Small Seed. (I don’t know if she’s got friends in Sweden, though.) Other things that likely qualify her as one of Cape Town’s new and influential young arrivistes is her association with the enterprising folk behind Woodstock’s Neighbourgoods Market, Whatiftheworld Gallery and recently opened Superette deli. Nice clients, and convenient too – Koutny lives in Woodstock (which also tends to challenge that description of her as an arriviste). But what exactly does Erika do? She makes nice lettering is one answer. But I think she explains it better on her website: “I am a graphic designer but sometimes I illustrate things too. Well...I prefer it when I say to people I make things, hopefully nice things so other people can say: “Hi, thanks for making me nice things.” Nice. Simple. No fuss. _Sean O’Toole


EXPAND

FROM OUTDOOR TO INDOOR, FROM INDOOR TO OUTDOOR.

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Progressive Profitable Printing

Graficomp: 011-792-1348 or sales@graficomp.co.za / Midcomp: 011-789-1222 or sales@midcomp.co.za 漏Copyright 2010 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP shall not be liable for technical or editorial errors contained herein.

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 5


enjin.co.za/directory

resource

silvertone international

bowens

Fine Art Printing Silvertone International was established specifically for the discerning artist and photographer – those demanding the highest standards of image reproduction for books, art catalogues, digital fine art prints (in colour or black & white), B&W film processing and hand prints. n Fine art printing n Hand printing n Scanning

Digital Printing Bowens offers a range of services that make print-on-demand in today’s high-tech world both profitable and easy for you. n Web-to-Print n Personalisation n Photo books

t: +27 11 482-7413/4 dennis@silvertone.co.za www.fine-art-printing.co.za Contact: Dennis da Silva

concept interactive Schools Founded in 1992, Concept Interactive is Cape Town’s leading digital design college, providing internationally accredited and recognised training. n Adobe Authorised Training Centre n Quark Authorised Training Centre n Corel Training Partner

t: +27 21 685-0750 info@conceptinteractive.net conceptinteractive.net Contact: Anne Centner

graphica supplies Cover Materials Graphica Supplies offers innovative cover materials of the highest quality and value, and is the leading supplier for the book, stationery, specialty packaging and jewellery industries. n Publishing n Stationery n Packaging t: +27 11 493-6833 sales@graphica.co.za www.graphica.co.za Contact: Simon Grose

great! stock Image Libraries Great! Stock is aleading South African image library offering many of the world’s finest international collections, in addition to its comprehensive local image collections. n Rights-Managed n Royalty-Free n Editorial & Research t: +27 11 880-7826 enquiries@greatstock.co.za www.greatstock.co.za Contact: Melanie Scheepers

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t: 0861 269-367 shaun@bowens.co.za www.bowens.co.za Contact: Shaun Bowen

picturenet africa Image Libraries Founded in 1992, PictureNET Africa represents some of South Africa’s top award-winning and iconic photographers. n Image collections n Assignments n Editorial features t: +27 11 614-1566 desk@picturenet.co.za www.picturenet.co.za Contact: Naudé van der Merwe

the training school Schools The Training School offers creative training solutions to enable you to master the skills needed to get the most out of your Adobe software. Their mission is to empower you. n Adobe Authorised Training Centre n Adobe Photoshop n Adobe Illustrator n Adobe InDesign t: +27 11 442-5136 pam@thetrainingschool.co.za www.thetrainingschool.co.za Contact: Pam Shoulder

learn2 digital media academy Schools Learn2 Digital Media Academy can help you to transform your artistry into a rewarding and profitable career in animation, visualisation or visual effects when you earn your Autodesk certification. n Autodesk Authorised Training Centre n Full-time courses n Part-time courses t: +27 21 421-5501 leigh@touchvision.co.za www.learn2.co.za/ Contact: Leigh Pearson


directorY

the open window Schools The Open Window offers complete education in the various fields of Visual Communication. n Diploma in Visual Communication Design n BA Degree in Visual Communication Design n Honours Degree in Visual Communication

lost/found

t:+ 27 12 470-8680/1 info@openwindow.co.za www.openwindow.co.za Contact: Janette Engelbrecht

Blaze a trail through the

vega school of brand communications Schools Vega offers undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in creative brand communications and in brand management and leadership. The degree programmes aim to produce a new breed of thinkers that provide creative and innovative approaches to building brands. In addition, specialist full-time photography qualifications are available for students wanting to pursue careers in the field of photography. The education and training at Vega is outcomes based and highly interactive, making for a great learning environment and real experience. All programmes are taught within a brand context. t: +27 11 521-4600 (Jhb)/+27 12 342-4770 (Pta) t: +27 31 266-2595 (Dbn)/+27 21 425-7491 (Ct) www.facebook.com/vegaschool

clutter. Find stuff and have others find your stuff. Get

a Directory Listing on these pages as well as the web

site at ww.enjin.co.za. Simply register on www.enjin.co.za and log-in to create a free profile, list your company,

vega orbit Schools Vega Orbit is the Continuing Professional Development division of Vega. Specialists in Strategy, Branding, Marketing, Creative Communications and Innovation, Vega Orbit offers innovative part-time qualifications and short learning programmes. Orbit provides you with new levels of awareness, creativity and skill, preparing you for a future when great ideas will be the only global currency.

and much more.

t: +27 11 521-4600 (Jhb)/+27 12 342-4770 (Pta) t: +27 31 266-2595 (Dbn)/+27 21 425-7491 (Ct) www.facebook.com/vegaschool

newmage

t 011-880-7734 f 011-447-2494 c 083-600-9969 kshoulder@newmage.co.za

t: +27 11 880-7334 Contact: Kevin Shoulder

2 Tottenham Ave (Cnr Glenhove & Tottenham) Melrose Estate 2196

Hard/software Newmage supplies products to the professional photographic market. High-end cameras, printer, scanner, etc. Supplier of high-end Epson largeformat printers and media. n Cameras n Printers n Software n Consumables

Kevin Shoulder

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 7


We’ve built the airports. We’ve cleaned the roads. We’ve trained the police. And finally the time has come, to welcome the world to the biggest event of the year: The 2010 Loerie Awards. Be a part of history and enter your work at www.theloerieawards.co.za

ENTRY DEADLINE 31 MAY. BUT ONLY OPEN TO AFRICA, THE MIDDLE EAST AND ISLAND STATES OFF THE AFRICAN COAST.

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imprint COVER Named after the father of modern mechanics, Troika’s Newton Virus introduces the concept of gravity to the desktop. EDITOR Gregor Naudé gregor@enjin.co.za DESIGN & ART DIRECTION QUBA Design & Motion Francois Smit francois@quba.co.za ADVERTISING Gregor Naudé gregor@enjin.co.za PUBLISHING Softmachine Media WHAT IS ENJIN MAGAZINE? ENJIN is a magazine for the rest of us. Dealing with issues on the frontlines where design meets advertising – whether professional or marginal, kitsch or refined, dull or quick-witted, we swoop down on it and publish it in all its blazing glory. PRODUCTION Enjin Creative Review is produced with Adobe Creative Suite 4. PAPER Cover printed on Curious Metal Iced Silver supplied by Antalis South Africa. Text printed on Hi-Q Titan Plus supplied by Antalis South Africa. CONTRIBUTORS Sean O’Toole, Sarah Britten, Debbie Smit, Bruce Cowie, Herman Manson, Eva Csernyanszky. COPYRIGHT Contributions are welcome. All due care will be taken with material submitted, but the magazine and publishers cannot be held responsible for loss or damages. The editor reserves the right to edit, amend or alter material in any way deemed necessary. THE SMALL PRINT Enjin Magazine is produced in South Africa and published by Softmachine Media, PO Box 91938, Auckland Park, 2006. The title ‘Enjin’ and logotype are registered trademarks. Neither this publication nor any part thereof may be reproduced by any means without the written permission of the publisher. The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publishers.

SUBSCRIBE Subscribe to ENJIN Magazine It doesn’t get much better than this. We’re offering five subscribers double their money back. All you have to do is subscribe to ENJIN Magazine for R150 for six beautifully printed issues.* Five subscribers stand a chance to win double their subscription fees back (that means R300 big ones to five lucky subscribers). Simple. Immediate benefits • Get your copy of ENJIN Creative Review before everyone else – delivered straight to your door. • Save money every month. • Never miss an issue – start or continue your collection immediately. Pay your cash into Softmachine, ABSA, branch code 632005, account number 4055586968. E-mail your deposit slip and name, postal address and contact details to subscribe@enjin.co.za. *Promotion ends 31 May 2010

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 9


art fair OF THE DOGS

plakbook

PAINTED ADVERTISEMENTS IN LOUIS BOTHA AVENUE, JOHANNESBURG. PHOTOS BY FRANCOIS SMIT

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art fair OF THE DOGS

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art fair OF THE DOGS

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art fair OF THE DOGS

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COMMENT

curious cover Some of our favourite paper ranges from Arjowiggins now feature refreshed finishes and colours for 2010. In particular the Curious Collection – a cornucopia of contrastingly curious curiosities are in the spotlight – and on our cover – this month. Arjowiggins is a company that works constantly to reduce the environmental impact of paper manufacturing. These products use only elemental chlorinefree (ECF) pulp from sustainable forests. All products in the Curious Collection are fully FSC accredited. The company has made significant investments in combined heat and power (CHP) generation, resulting in reduced greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, Arjowiggins mills have continuous improvement programmes to increase efficiency and reduce waste. Effluent waste is either treated or recycled in other processes. The Curious range consists of 4 finishes: Curious Metallics – This range offers a wide spectrum of fashionable colours, all with intense reflective metallics. Perfectly complementing each other, they provide a new dimension to creations, perfectly co-ordinated with the Translucent shades. Together with the new metallic colours, this allows for an infinite range of combinations between transparent and irridescent effects. Curious Translucents – Ebb and flow in a waterfall of colours with the new translucent range, which will satisfy anyone who seeks either vivid or subtle transparent shades. Always elegant, their transparency provides a rainbow of modern colours which complement each other when matched with their Metallic counterparts. Curious Touch – Soft Touch is a unique range with a distinctive peach-like feel which confers a sensual dimension to your communications, provoking wonder when discovered. It leaves you with a strong tactile memory. Curious Skin – Skin offers matte colours that are amazingly homogenous with an ultra smooth feel. The fashionable bold colours heighten the quality of any creation. Thanks to state-of-the-art technology used to obtain exceptional four-colour print quality, while still ensuring ultra short drying time, three new pastel shades were developed. Its visual smoothness entices you to caress it with a stroke of your hand.

The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog again 14 ENJIN MAR/APR 2010

Binary

Death

Eco

Love

Peace

Soccer

guest font This issue’s guest font is Pixeluxe, which is based on some of the most clichéd symbols designers use, according to designer/typographer Jan Erasmus. Each pixel in a character was replaced with a symbol, thereby imparting specific meaning to the font. The symbols bloated the data – in the case of the cap A in the ‘Death’ font, it has 95 times more data than the Helvetica cap A. Erasmus could only output the fonts as PostScript Type 1 for screen and print; attempting to output as TrueType, which doubles the curve nodes, simply did not work. Available for Mac and Windows from http:// cybergraphics.bz.


train wreck Kylebaker tweeted: “Die Antwoord has been sweeping the net as of late. They came out of nowhere.” “Sweeping” is an understatement. The Cape Town based “zef rap-rave crew”, true to their website (dieantwoord.com, a big, flashy fullscreen one) byline which claims that they are “taking over the interweb”, bashed and cursed their way into the ether with a brand of (un)pop(ular music) that is at once dystopic and celebratory. If you are South African it will make you feel both proud and faintly nauseous. As you puff yourself up while feeling deflated (on Facebook, Kevin Krawez says: “There is something about this group. It is like watching a train wreck, you cannot turn away.”), the rest of the world is applauding. One witness to Die Antwoord’s Enter the Ninja video (which features Leon Botha, a DJ with progeria) says: “ So good I wanna learn Afrikaans, to better enjoy those crazy lyrics.” Another comment reads: “ I am both terrified and highly pleased by this. It’s utterly confusing to my sensibilities, yet I cannot say that I am not entertained by it.” If we were talking art in the language of the critic, Die Antwoord would be called “important” because they are different and new. Taxijam, an outfit that films bands performing in taxis defines them as “a lovable, mongrel-like entity made in South Africa, the love-child of many diverse cultures, black, white, coloured and alien, all pumped into one wild and crazy journey down the crooked path to enlightenment.” Die Antwoord is photographed by Sean Metelerkamp. Read the interview on page 24. _Debbie Smit

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agenda/agency, competition, call for entry, TWEETS

hot

go create or something Adobe SA has launched an online public-voting competition to ignite creative juices. The competition, open to all creative professionals, students and agencies aims to spark a collective creative genius. With over R100 000 in products and prizes up for grabs, the Go Create competition encourages entrants to be as creative as possible. The overall winners per category will be selected by public vote. “The theme for the Go Create competition is ‘My Creative Suite’, reflecting the pivotal role Adobe plays in the creative process, whether in design, video, Web or photography disciplines,” says Leonard Rabotapi, Adobe marketing manager for Africa.

go create.

The task of developing the Web interface was contracted to Johannesburg-based agency Digital Dynamite. The site epitomises the functionality Adobe products bring to the digital realm, with users able to upload their creative efforts, vote for their designs of choice, and spread the word through social media sites such as Facebook. Digital Dynamite md Brian Pfeiffer says the approach to developing the Go Create website was unique, as it is both dynamic and real time. He points out that the system has built-in intelligence, which tracks and tallies votes in real time. Once an individual submission receives 100 or more votes, it automatically moves to the Hall of Fame section. To showcase your creative talent, register at www.gocreate.co.za.

new dialogue agency King James Group has created a dialogue marketing team to integrate social media, word-of-mouth and community building activity across its campaigns. Formed with a unique creative team structure that pulls in talent from across the different agencies within the group, +one blends PR, web, media, design and advertising skills to create an entirely new marketing discipline. The team has been made up of a number of individuals with a strong track record in social media as marketers, but more importantly as active community participants, bloggers and networkers. This group will pull in talent from across the agency as needed to create seamlessly integrated, community building campaigns. “The launch of +one is just one way in which the King James Group is adapting to the rapidly changing consumer and media environment. Our unique creative structure allows us to focus on new ideas and methodologies and draw from a diverse range of skills to build campaigns that traditional or specialist agencies operating in silos simply cannot match,” said James Barty, group chief executive. The +one team is already working for clients such as Parmalat, brandhouse, kulula, ghd and KWV. plus-one.co.za

winning designs

The Antalis Art of Design 2010 competition aims to encourage designers to consider paper as an important aspect of design. Just as the use of colour, balance, photography and illustration is part of the design process, paper is another tactile tool at the designer’s fingertips. The choice of stock, the different effects that can be created with various printing techniques and the finishes that can be achieved with the use of paper, are unlimited. Work produced on Conqueror can be entered into the competition, the deadline for which is 23 July, 2010. The Grand Prix winner wins a trip to New York worth R50 000. antalis.co.za

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agenda tweets Kassie Naidoo http://twitter.com/lilredshoes Jenny Ehlers http://twitter.com/jennyehlers Steri Stumpie (not a person) http://twitter.com/steri_stumpie Alex van Tonder http://twitter.com/capetown_girl

the mother of events The largest showpiece on earth is about to begin. But to be a shining part of history and have your name sealed in the annals of greatness is not going to be an easy walk in the fanpark. It’s going to take endurance, commitment and all the creative might you have to capture the imagination of the world. The Loerie Awards encompass every area of brand communication including television, radio and print advertising, graphic design, architecture, direct marketing, non-broadcast video, live events, and digital media. The awards are regionally focused on Africa and the Middle East, and entries from outside of this region are not eligible. Sorry Brazil, England, Italy, France, Germany. Recognised as the most prestigious award in our region (and possibly on the planet), ‘the Loeries’ has become far more than a single awards ceremony and now includes several activities promoting creative excellence throughout the year. In exciting news, International Crafts are now eligible for an award. For example, if a US agency conceives a TV commercial for a US client, but uses a South African Director (based also in SA, not residing in the US permanently) then this will be eligible for a Direction Craft. To be clear, the spirit of the rule is to recognise crafts produced within the region, whether or not they are conceived or flighted regionally. All work must be aired, launched or published for the first time between 1 June 2009 and 31 May 2010, and entries must be approved by the client. For architectural or similar structures, some elements of the structure or design may be older than this, but new elements must have been launched during the eligibility period. The full terms and conditions of entry can be found on the website. All online entry forms, physical material and payments must be received on or before 31 May 2010. theloerieawards.co.za

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 17


agenda/books, dvd

inspiration

type will be free Can you really compare experimental three-dimensional typography – like lettering made of live moss or letter kites that fly messages in the sky – to the work of Gutenberg? If you ask Jeanette Abbink, Emily CM Anderson and the over 100 international designers and typographers featured in 3D Typography, the answer is a resounding yes. Having worked for prestigious media outlets as designers and art directors, Abbink and Anderson have compiled this book as a reaction to the fact that so much of today’s typography is conceived via screens. Like Gutenberg and generations of typeface designers who worked with physically shaped and cast lead type, these

new directions in packaging Boxed and Labelled is a comprehensive overview of the most intelligent, innovative, playful and attractive examples of current packaging design The broad spectrum of packaging is illustrated through an extensive selection of products characterised by cutting-edge graphic design, sassy illustrations, striking typography, careful use of colour as well as unique materials. The examples in the book run the gamut from jam jars, chocolate wrappers, wine labels, champagne bottles and perfume flacons to sneaker boxes and shopping bags. It offers exciting solutions and presents the best in packaging design today. twitter.com/Biblioteq

artists return the literal heft to others. markbattypublisher.com

NeVV ApproAches to pAckAgiNg DesigN 18 ENJIN MAR/APR 2010


agenda

love and money The sheer volume of illustrated work being produced is overwhelming. How do you keep track? Every year, illustration seems to creep into more and more facets of our lives, through advertising, fashion, film and magazines. There are countless websites that follow the latest and greatest, but how does one keep track? Don’t you sometimes wish that someone would take the better stuff and store it somewhere for you? Maybe in a book? Soon to be released by Laurence King Publishing, For Love and Money outlines the growing role of illustration in today’s creative marketplace. The book captures 417 of the better pieces created over the last couple of years, including interviews with each illustrator.

drawing life A new book examines Mariscal’s intense relationship with drawing and illustration The first book to detail the work of prolific illustrator and designer Javier Mariscal, Drawing Life includes a wide range of Mariscal’s works, from his first commissions to current works-in-progress. Designed, written and illustrated by Mariscal himself, this volume showcases the huge scope of clients and collaborators that he and his studio have worked with, as well as his more personal and creative work. Drawing Life recognizes Mariscal’s enormously enigmatic style and significant contribution to the spheres of illustration, graphic design, product and interior design. twitter.com/Biblioteq

objectified Filmmaker Gary Hustwit takes viewers on a journey through the elusive world of industrial design and the interaction of people with the objects that surround them Nearly everyone spends their life surrounded by the work of industrial designers, but very few people understand the process by which your furniture, cell phone or alarm clock came to look and feel the way they do, and how the elements of design interact with our own ideas and assumptions about value and functionality. The design of everyday objects has more than a little to do with mass psychology and the way it intersects with commerce, even if most people never give the process a moment’s thought. www.designisagoodidea.com/

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agenda/wired

smoke It’s real but it ain’t cheap The creative community has long been anticipating the launch of Autodesk’s premier editorial finishing product for the Mac. Smoke has helped define this sector of the market on other platforms by combining the timeline workflow of a nonlinear editor with advanced visual effects tools. Smoke can now harness the 64-bit power of Mac OS X Snow Leopard to provide an interactive, all-in-one finishing experience. As a software offering, Smoke can run on Mac hardware already in place for creative cut work using Final Cut Pro or Avid Media Composer. This makes it easier to integrate Smoke’s editorial finishing tools into existing Mac-based workflows. The top features include: An all-in-one toolset for editorial finishing: editing, conform, 2D and 3D titling, sophisticated colour correction, image stabilization, precision tracking and keying, 2D and 3D compositing, paint, rotoscoping, retouch and design Autodesk Modular Keyer, Master Keyer and Colour Warper advanced image-processing technologies Ability to import entire timelines from Media Composer or Final Cut Pro using the AAF or XML format, and even finish projects using Apple ProRes or Avid DNxHD media used in creative cut Native support for popular files-based formats: QuickTime, RED, Panasonic P2 HD and Sony XDCam files Support for uncompressed DPX, TIFF and OpenEXR workflows. “The business of post-production is evolving. Postproduction and broadcast facilities alike are seeking more affordable, integrated creative tools that can help them stand out from the crowd,” said Stig Gruman, Autodesk vice president of digital entertainment. “Smoke 2010 on the Mac has been designed to help editors increase creative output, project quality and turnaround times. It brings production-proven finishing capabilities to the extremely talented community of artists already using the Mac platform in broadcast and post-production.” Beta testers had the following to say. “We started our business with Final Cut and After Effects, but we’re always looking for new capabilities to enhance what those tools already do and to be more competitive. “Smoke seamlessly integrated into our existing Mac workflow and allowed us to bring our creative work to an even higher level,” said Michael Sandness, a colourist and finishing artist at Splice. “We have to do everything fast and cool. “Since all the tools I need are in Smoke, I don’t lose any time going into other programs. There’s prestige working on a Smoke,” added Valeria Petit, a motion graphics artist at Ottoblix. Look out for a full Smoke review in the upcoming issue. A Smoke 2010 for Mac OS X license retails for an estimated $15 000. www.touchvision.co.za

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For further information, please e-mail info.sa@iomega.com or contact your local dealer

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 21


agenda/wired

smart images Interview with Roger Machin – Canon SA Q: The rate of technological improvement is unbelievable these days, how are you keeping up? Canon always spends a large portion of its annual turnover on research and development so we are always trying to keep up with trends and new technologies. We are normally at the leading edge of development with regard to image quality, but sometimes new ideas come from other manufacturers and prove to be popular so we need to keep on our toes. Q: We keep on hearing about the new Legria HF range? The new range is quite a departure from previous models. The range has expanded to include an entry-level, mid-range and semi-pro selection. High Definition is growing exponentially worldwide, so Canon has decided to increase the offerings for consumers. Q: All the talk these days is about High Definition. What exactly is HD? Essentially, it’s all about higher image quality on a display (TV, LCD or computer monitor). Standard analogue TV broadcast signals comprise of a number of pixels sent in a series of lines to make up an image. Standard Definition varies from country to country – but normally has around 500 to 700 pixels per line with approximately 400 to 500 lines to make up the image. HD ready signals have about 1200 pixels in over 700 lines. Full HD has over 1900 pixels in over 1000 lines – hence the massive increase in image quality. Q: What is Canon’s approach to HD? Canon has focused on full HD models since the launch of HD video cameras. All of the models we have launched have featured over 1000 lines of resolution. All of the current Flash-based memory products feature full HD, and Canon has produced surrounding technology to maximize the overall image quality. Firstly, all models have a specially designed HD lens for best colour and sharpness. Secondly, all domestic models now feature Canon’s own CMOS sensor for high-resolution signals with low noise in low light environments. Thirdly, all models now have the powerful DIGIC DV III processor to compress the information and feed it through the AVCHD Codec into memory. Q: Is this different from your competitors? If so, how and why? Almost all of the competitors are focusing on Flash-based memory video cameras at the moment. Our distinct advantages in lens design and quality stem from many decades of research into the production of professional lenses. Our advantages in CMOS production comes from our very successful lineup of EOS DSLR cameras. Our powerful DIGIC processor has its roots in several other product groups including EOS, Powershot and Selphy. Added to this is the highest quality use of the AVCHD codec at 24 Mbps throughout the range.

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Q: EOS Movie is something new at Canon. What is it? EOS Movie is a function that Canon has added to all of the most recent DSLR cameras launched. It allows the use of a DSLR camera for video. Previous models were unable to do this until the advent of the live view functionality on DSLRs. Q: Which is better: EOS Movie or a dedicated video camera? Dedicated video cameras have distinct advantages – mostly compact size, a powered zoom lens and fast, responsive auto focus. They also allow extended run times and recording times of well over 60 minutes. EOS Movie has the advantage of offering an enormous variety of lens options that give the filmmaker control over depth of field, focal length and manual focus point. Low-light performance on EOS Movie DSLRs is also a major difference. Q: Do they both have a place in film-making today? Absolutely. The domestic market still wants a compact video camera with long battery life and long recording times that is extremely simple to use, yet provides high image quality. EOS DSLR cameras are starting to be used on a daily basis in the professional industry segment for shooting TV commercials, documentaries and music videos because of their special talents in controlled environments. Q: Please explain what the new six-blade hexagonal diaphragm featured on the Legria HF S series offers? Very similar to the new diaphragm construction we have started using with EF lenses over the last few years, the six-blade diaphragm allows for very pleasing background blurring at widest aperture; it has almost been specifically designed for portraits and people shots where a cluttered background can be distracting. Q: How does Smart Auto make taking photographs simple, even for a novice like myself? Smart Auto is a technology first announced with our range of Powershot and Ixus compact digital cameras. The camera automatically identifies the scene as viewed through the lens and makes adjustments accordingly for maximum image quality. Although scene detection is not a new technology, the use of it in such a simple way for the first time makes it a very valuable feature that even advanced video users will find useful.


agenda

Canon EOS 550D Canon has unveiled a new addition to its expanding EOS range of digital SLR cameras – the EOS 550D. According to Canon, the EOS 550D redefines the boundaries of the company’s consumer digital SLR range, incorporating technologies and features commonly found in semi-professional digital SLRs into the compact, lightweight body favoured by consumers. The EOS 550D comes with a newly-developed 18-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, coupled with Canon’s DIGIC 4 image processor and the ability to shoot Full HD movies. Canon’s latest EOS camera supports standard ISO settings of 100-6400 (expandable to 12800), while enhanced in-camera noise reduction technology promises to boost performance in low light conditions. The new camera features a 9-point AF system with one extrasensitive cross-type point at the centre for f/2.8 or faster lenses. The camera also supports high-speed, continuous shooting at 3.7 frames per second (fps). The camera includes the iFCL metering system first launched in the EOS 7D. New for EOS is the ability to set the top limit for automatic ISO, allowing users to control the maximum amount of noise in their images. In a first for an entry-level EOS, exposure compensation and bracketing can be set up to plus or minus five and two stops respectively, allowing the photographer to take a number of differently exposed versions of the same shot to ensure they capture a well-exposed image – even in difficult lighting conditions. The EOS 550D records video in full 1920x1080p HD resolution, allowing photographers to select the frame rate preferred from 30, 25 and 24fps, as well as offering 720p video at 60 and 50fps. The EOS 550D also includes a 3.5mm stereo microphone socket, enabling the use of an external microphone when capturing video. An integrated HDMI port compatible with High-Definition Multimedia Interface -Consumer Electronics Control (HDMICEC), video and images stored on the EOS 550D can be viewed on an HD-ready TV and controlled via the TV remote. Photographers can also take manual control over exposure settings, changing the depth of field and degree of motion blur to shoot more creatively. Highlight tone priority (HTP) can be set independently for movie capture, without changing any still image capture settings. The EOS 550D is the first in the EOS range to feature Movie Crop and gives consumers more flexibility to capture important moments, according to Canon. The new model also comes with bigger, more intuitive buttons, redesigned following feedback from users. The EOS 550D is fully compatible with all Canon EF and EF-S lenses and EX series Speedlite flash units, including the compact Speedlite 270EX. The camera is also compatible with the new RC-6 Remote Control, allowing photographers to capture stills and Full HD video without touching the body. canon.co.za

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work/interview

hit the beat Sean Metelerkamp hits the perfect beat Who are you Sean Metelerkamp. What do you do I take photos and make videos. What is your background At the moment it is a wooden cupboard. Who do you do it for Myself. Do you have a ‘style’ I’m sure I do but I don’t want to know what it is. What is your favourite shoot When everybody involved works hard and enjoys the process and is pleased with the outcome. How do you approach a shoot/music video I take loads of catnaps. Be by myself. And then work as hard as possible with a solid team to try and come as close to the idea as possible. The idea is most important.

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Is there a local ‘style’ in photography I don’t know what’s happening locally in photography. If I had to guess I would say that people are into photographing bat poo. Is there a trend towards ever more extreme imagery I reckon people dig to push the envelope in different ways. You can generally feel when it is contrived though. What is visual culture That is a vulture. Check your spelling. Who do you admire – or not Anybody doing exactly what they want without a worry. Anything else you want to add I want my head to shrink to the size of a chili pip. I wonder what my voice will sound like. Sean is powered by Harry & Co. www.harryandco.tv www.seanmetelerkamp.com


work/interview

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work/ILLUSTRATION

them and us

Merwe Marchand le Roux/Martin Nicolausson Big-and-Small

A new publication explores different world views and aesthetics Them-And-Us brings together twenty European and twenty African visual artists, designers, illustrators and photographers. The project aims to explore the similarities and differences between first and third world views and aesthetics by pairing up artists from Europe with their African counterparts. Through a series of 20 double-sided posters, artists were invited to explore the notion of ‘Them–And–Us’ and the broader theme of tolerance (or intolerance). Working in two prescribed colours, each artist created a poster. The reverse features a poster designed by an artist from the other continent. Artists were paired and introduced at the outset of the project; together each team chose a specific theme, such as ‘Light–And–Dark’ or ‘Smart–

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And–Dumb’. The final outcome is two posters that talk to each other, yet are distinctly the product of their respective makers. The final 40 posters have been packaged together with a 64-page publication, profiling each of the artists involved and detailing the purpose and process of the project. Them–and–Us will be exhibited in Durban, Cape Town, Stockholm and London in 2010. All proceeds from sales will go to Amnesty International to help in the global fight against intolerance. Them–And–Us is curated by South African design studio, disturbance, Stockholm resident and graphic designer, Noel Pretorius and British designer/writer Adrian Shaughnessy, who also wrote and edited the accompanying publication. them-and-us.org


work

Garth Walker/Noma Bar Saint-and-Sinner

Richard Hart/Killian Eng Reason-and-Madness

Brandt Botes/R2 Here-and-There

Nathan Reddy/Carl Kleiner Heal-and-Hurtt

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work/ILLUSTRATION

innocent mukheli If not going to art school is a crime, then this guy is guilty “I’m 24 years old. I was introduced to the crazy world of advertising by a close friend 3 years ago. And I’ve been on this roller coaster ride since. Before then I had no idea what I was going to do with my life. I never went to any kind of advertising or art school, so a lot of what I know I learnt from mentors and the rest is self taught. I have a twin brother, Justice. We have many similarities (both art directors at ad agency Draftfcb.) But the one thing that sets us apart is our style. He is a lot more into design. I approach my work with the vision of a designer and the skills of a fine artist. The result is my unique style that makes me the artist that I am. I’m constantly trying to fine tune my abilities, and I’m always open to learning new techniques. Art is my expression. It’s my contribution to the world.

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work

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work/PRODUCT DESIGN

darwin chair

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work/PRODUCT DESIGN

work

an electrifying chair

After more than 30 years in the graphic design industry, Stefan Sagmeister has made headlines for numerous reasons, but it all boils down to one thing: groundbreaking graphic design. With a knack for transforming stale thinking, Austrian-born Sagmeister often pulls inspiration from the ordinary. Take the recent renovation of his studio in New York. Unable to find furniture he liked and unwilling to settle, Sagmeister decided to design the pieces himself. “I knew that I needed a few different pieces, including a couple of lounge chairs,” Sagmeister says. “I also knew that coming from graphic design, I didn’t want to design purely form-based chairs. I wanted to make them quite graphic.” The solution? A chair that can change with you. “The idea developed of designing a chair that has hundreds of sheets of paper as a cushion. Just rip off a sheet of paper, and you have a chair with a new colour, pattern and texture.” As his vision of what became known as the Darwin Chair took shape, Sagmeister began to focus on a new question—how to make it happen. “There was just a question of how to make the paper the star and have the structure underneath it recede as much as possible,” he explains. Sagmeister began by examining the structure that the paper cushion was attached to. “Initially, the base was made out of wood, but we changed it to stainless steel. This allowed it to become skinnier and free swinging, so it really became all about the paper.” And just what was it about the paper that deserved the spotlight? “Each of the 230 sheets is printed with a different design,” Sagmeister says. The intricate patterns represent the creation of the universe and the creation of the world, from the beginning of plant, animal and human life all the way to the digital revolution. “Because we wanted the design to have intricate patterns, we needed a highquality printing technique that could depict very fine lines and many colours. We also wanted something that would reduce the environmental impact of printing. With those parameters, HP’s Designjet L65500 was chosen.” To complete the production of the Darwin Chair, Sagmeister needed to select the paper that would make up the cushion—one of the largest elements of the piece. Having already found a way to offer hundreds of different styles in one piece of furniture, Sagmeister used his choice of paper to extend the life of the chair even further. “The chair is a piece that will probably have a shelf life of 30, 40 or even 50 years, so we were very careful when we designed these sheets,” he notes, acknowledging that the prints could even be given a second life by becoming framed pieces of art. To achieve this level of durability and versatility, Sagmeister decided to print on HP DuPont Tyvek Banner. “It used to be that if you used a printing technique that was more environmentally aware, you always lost something else, like print quality or durability. Now, you’re able to have it all,” he says. “A lot of things that I do, printers tell me are not possible at first. I like to constantly push the edge there,” Sagmeister says. The Darwin Chair is a testament to Sagmeister’s ability to rethink the ordinary and produce groundbreaking results.

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agencY

Photographs © Alex Delfanne/Artwise Curators 2008 and/or © Troika 2008

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agencY

techno poetry Troika have found remarkable outlets for their technology-driven social interventions. British

Airways, MTV, BBC and Warner Music have all sought out the threesome’s imaginations to activate their brands in unexpected ways. By Eva Csernyanszky

UK design and art collective Troika wowed the crowd at the Design Indaba in Cape Town with its cheeky computer programme, Newton Virus, which allows gravity to take effect upon unwitting desktops – without damaging any files. The programme has been around for a while now, though Troika explained they are currently working on a new version after Apple recently intercepted them. Founded in 2003 by Conny Freyer, Eva Rucki and Sebastien Noel, the multi-disciplinary art and design practice have found remarkable outlets for their technology-driven social interventions. Their creations have been self-described as ‘simple, playful and provocative technology driven, social interventions’ and by others as ‘technological poetry’. Either way, it is inspiring to see designers escape pure print or web design in the form of installations that provoke, and some of which find commercial application, too. Popular works of Troika include a giant flipdot cloud that reflects the colours of its environment, created for British Airways’ luxury Heathrow lounge; park sculptures that amplify passersby’ whispers; an ‘electroprobe’ that allows you to access the silent language of household gadgets, creating a big magnetic bubble that ripples to the words of electronic objects, and makes audible conversations that you have never heard before; guerrilla loudspeakers that read out text messages, and a wonderful music box that plays a tune in response to torn museum tickets fed into it.

 Electroprobes – ‘Shit! I forgot the iPod!’ is an electromagnetic environment specially created for the Electroprobes – an installation that presents a chaotic assemblage of electric/electronic objects, commonly found in the houses of the 21st century: electric appliances, mobile phone chargers, DVD players and transformers. The inherent order behind this chaotic assemblage is revealed by the Electroprobes. The various objects are arranged by their electromagnetic tunes in order to create a magnetic ‘orchestra’ that the user is able to hear with the probes.

 Named after the father of modern mechanics, the ‘Newton Virus’ introduces the concept of gravity to the desktop – icons become susceptible to Newton’s invisible force and fall, roll and tumble in whatever direction gravity pulls them, delivering a little bit of reality to a virtual environment. Utilizing the onboard motion sensors of the MacBook, the virus senses the movements of its host, adjusting its effects accordingly. Perfect for spicing up your colleagues’ day or simply enjoying the marvels of Newtonian principles at work!

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agencY

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agencY

Be sure to have a look at Troika’s fantastic book, Digital by Design, which deals with data visualisation. As more and more information is being re-designed, there is an abundant range of possibilities available. By simplifying data across a series of disciplines, as diverse as biology, social networks and the world wide web, designers make information more accessible, more appealing and, essentially, more readable. Functional designs make sense to the user and require a visual language system that uses colour, shape, line, hierarchy and composition to communicate clearly and appropriately, much like the alphabetic and character-based languages used between humans.

 Artwise Curators challenged Troika to come up with a sculpture that would be exciting, innovative and would welcome passengers to the new British Airways Galleries Lounges in a spectacular way. The five meter long Cloud is the first three-dimensional nonrectangular structure made using flip dot technology (a technique only previously used on 2D information boards at railway stations). Cloud uses over 5 000 flip dots with bespoke engineering and specially developed animation software that allows the appearance of the cloud to change throughout the day. The flip dots respond to their programming by audibly flipping between black and silver, creating a mesmerising wave as they chase each across the surface of the cloud. Reflecting its surrounding colours, the mechanical mass is transformed into an organic form that appears to come alive, shimmering and flirting with the onlookers that pass by from both above and below.

Our favourites, to mention only a few, are Visual Complexity – a massive resource space designed to inspire, motivate and enlighten any person doing research on this field and providing links to many projects; Marcos Weskamp’s active portal of innovative data design projects; Newsmap’s colourful visualisation of the most talked about news posts around the globe; and Digg Labs’ diggers stack (also downloadable as a screensaver), where popular stories across the net fall from above and stack into functional columns for easy reading. Number 27’s brilliant ‘We feel fine’ project, now in book form, maps our global emotional status by drawing keywords such as ‘excited’ or ‘depressed’ from a huge database of blog entries to create a colourful visual-emotional landscape representing the world’s ‘mood’ at any given moment. Troika crosses the digital divide by contaminating arts with design disciplines and utilising new mediums for digital expression. We applaud them for that.

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feature/image

doing it ourselves the twin brothers, hasan

In 1978, seven years before the birth of twin brothers Hasan and Husain Essop, the South African writer Ahmed Essop published a luminous collection of short stories titled The Hajji and Other Stories. The 22 fictions contained in Essop’s collection evoked the discrete, fragrant world of Fordsburg, a predominantly Indian neighbourhood in central Johannesburg. Populated with bearded mullahs, Hindu mystics, clever conmen and snarling dogs, Essop’s fictional realm is not at all dissimilar to the Photoshop reality crafted by the Essop brothers in their fake photographs.

and husain essop, came to promince with fabulously fake photographs that explored their

It is rainy and overcast the morning I meet with the two brothers at a coffee shop on Kloof Street, a short walk from the art school where the pair graduated. Husain, who studied photography, arrives wearing a woollen skullcap and hooded sweater, while Hasan, a printmaker and the quieter of the two brothers, wears a dark, fulllength coat, his black hair spiked.

muslim identities. by sean o’toole

The two are in an upbeat mood, partly because Husain is off to Zimbabwe to finalise marriage arrangements. I put the most obvious question to them first. “In Xhosa tradition,” says Husain, “the child born second is the eldest. So I regard myself as the eldest.” Hassan grins and pitches in a few words, something that becomes a feature of the ensuing dialogue.

By Garth Walker

Still in warm-up mode, I ask about their home life. Dad, explains Husain, grew up in District Six; a fabric salesman, his marriage to mom, who came to Cape Town from Johannesburg, was arranged in the traditional manner. Both parents are devout Muslims, something that has left an indelible mark on their sons: throughout their school career, Hasan and Husain were made to attend an afterhours Muslim school, or madrasa. “Everyday,” emphasises Husain. “We had history instilled in us, the way to read the Koran, all those things that every Muslim needs to be a good person.” Husain, the more voluble of the two, says their clean-living ways made them stand out at Michaelis School of Fine Art, particularly amongst the mostly white student body. Husain: “People kind of pushed us away because we were well behaved and well mannered, because we didn’t indulge…I think they were afraid because we were Muslim. We got a lot of clever-arses coming up to us, mocking our god and mocking our religion.” Hasan: “We never really established bonds with people on campus.” Husain: “For us, those four years were about showing people what Muslims are really about – we are friendly people, we don’t judge, we pray, we are humble.”

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Facing Qiblah, 2009

Four Fathers, 2009

Blessing Meat, 2009


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feature/image

Cape Town (South Africa), 2009

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feature/image

As the conversation unfolds, Husain states that it wasn’t only their contemporaries who made life difficult at university. He leans closer to the microphone. “I’ll put this on record: my lecturers sucked, they didn’t do shit for me – they just caused me more misery.” He says this was the outcome of being repeatedly told to question their faith. “In the beginning we did try,” says Hasan. “In second year, we used Koranic texts and calligraphy in our work.” Husain, whose work was initially failed on the basis that it was propagandist, shakes his head. He recalls how his parents looked at their student work with dissatisfaction. Continues Husain: “That’s when we realised we are conforming to those people’s ideas, to make them happy, not making ourselves happy, not producing work that expresses what we feel and are trying to say.” So what exactly is this duo trying to say with their playfully constructed scenes set in various non-descript parts of Cape Town? As is his habit, Husain takes the lead. He describes at length his pilgrimage to Mecca. Preceded by a year’s rigorous spiritual training, and finally completed in early 2007, Husain says his participation in the Hajji, a duty every Muslim must fulfil at least once in their lifetime, has played a big part in the work he started producing after his return. “It made me conscious of morality and immorality,” the skull-capped brother elaborates. “For two months, while I was travelling, I didn’t see a woman’s eyes. That made me conscious of the effect of the face in Islam. I think that is why we decided to use only ourselves in our photographs, to take on the burden of judgement. God will judge us for our actions, and hopefully see the positive in us.” But how exactly did Husain’s participation in the Hajji prompt him to collaborate with his brother? The narrative here jumps back and forth. In his last year at university, Hassan started experimenting with good old-fashioned modernist collage. “I cut out pictures of landscapes and superstars, trying to create dialogue between them – I found it so difficult.” With the help of William Esposito, Hasan’s only friend at art school, he worked on a series of lightbox images of himself dressed in various outfits. “When I saw the way he interacted with himself, I thought it was amazing,” Husain edges into the conversation. Looking at his brother’s collages, Husain suggested the two collaborate, that they go out and shoot themselves in real locations – beaches, stone quarries, mosques. “As a photographer, that was my buzz, to focus on light and technique, and to really mess with people’s minds,” says Husain. While making these elaborate plans, which would culminate in their first formal collaboration, the real world intervened. Husain started working as a press photographer to earn a living. The job held little appeal and he soon quit. His next job was equally unfulfilling: for three months Husain recorded weddings with a video camera. Husain: “The guy I worked for was jealous of me. He said I wasn’t an artist. I snapped and left. The next day, Storm Janse van Rensburg [a curator at the Goodman Gallery] called and asked what we were doing.” Hasan: “He saw our graduate work and really liked what we were doing.” Husain: “We told him about our idea to collaborate – he said cool.”

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feature/image With sponsorship from their newly appointed gallery, the pair set about constructing five photographs, two of which were eventually selected for The Loaded Lens, a group exhibition presented at the Goodman. The brothers debuted their photos of a pit-bull fight and a scene set near the Black River, alongside well-known practitioners like British artist and filmmaker Isaac Julien and Iranian-born Shirin Neshat, now resident in New York. Neshat, who won the Silver Lion for best director for her film Women Without Men at the 2009 Venice film festival, offers an interesting counterpoint to the Essop brothers. When she exhibited at the Guggenheim Museum in 2002, Neshat was introduced to US audiences as an artist who “questions the role of women in Islamic society, recognising the tensions between a collective cultural identity and one driven by individual concerns”. While both brothers admit to “loving” her work, both are adamant that they wish to pursue an art career harmonious with their religious beliefs. In Islam depictions of the human form is considered haraam or forbidden. This prompts a rare outburst from Hasan about their artistic ambitions: “It is the battle between religion and art. Art in Islam is not really defined. We want to have both – religion and art.” Since making their debut in 2007, the brothers have found a growing audience for their fantastical photographic work. A successful run of sales at Art Basel, the world’s leading art fair, in 2008, kick-started the process, and in 2009 the pair were invited to show on the 10th Havana Biennial in Cuba. This in turn led to an offer to facilitate a workshop on invitation from the University of Hamburg, Germany. During all of this Husain, the photographically inclined one, assisted artist Sue Williamson with the making of photographs in Havana for her exhibition Other Voices, Other Cities. The twins also completed a post-graduate diploma in art at their old art school. But this is simply context. It doesn’t answer a basic question: Who does what to create their staged photographic portraits? With his training in photography, Husain handles setting-up the camera on a tripod and doing test shots; Hasan will typically pose first, later switching roles with his brother. If the action requires both protagonists to be in a shot, they will get a third person to push the shutter button. “The layering is the tricky part,” says Husain of the digital compositing that underlies the making of their photographic collages. “It is timeconsuming but simple, if you know Photoshop.” Warns Hasan: it is the content, not the technique that is important. “Everything is thought out before the photograph is actually done,” he states. So, in a scene showing the brothers drinking Coke on a street corner, it is no accident that the choice of location (Thornton Road) was also the scene of an apartheid-era massacre. Or that the minstreltroupe whose colours they sport in an upbeat photograph made in the predominantly Malay Bo-Kaap neighbourhood happens to be owned by a notorious Cape Town gangster. Everything is intentional, from the respectful supplication of the worshippers photographed in a mosque to the pair, playfully masked, holding hands in the dining room of a devout Christian. “These are shots from our memory, environments or situations which we have seen or come across,” clarifies Husain. “All we are trying to do is recreate it using ourselves and nobody else.” _Sean O’Toole is a Cape Town journalist, editor of Art South Africa and infrequent (like never) user of Photoshop

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@mosphere, 2007

Black River, 2007

Garden of Earthly Delights, 2007

Sujuud, Closest to God, 2007 Pit Bull Fight, 2007


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feature/store

ideashop

situated at 44 stanley in milpark, johannesburg, design is a good idea is a place of inspiration for those obsessed with limited edition designer heirlooms

Design is a good idea is the real-world showroom of the highly acclaimed online store. It’s a place of inspiration for anyone obsessed with the best high-end, limited edition designer collectibles and heirlooms from some of the worlds most forward thinking designers:  Sander Mulder, Lars Amhoff, John Brauer, Jaime Hayon and Nato Fukasawa to name but a few. The shop offers a virtual and printed catalogue of carefully selected items, and they’re happy to import any item not on their floor. The web site functions as an international design resource, displaying items that they find interesting, as well as showcasing their own work and the products they sell in-store. Apart from the delectable design goods, they also keep an exclusive range of audio visual equipment from Bang & Olufsen, and an amazing selection of books (not available anywhere else in the country), magazines and DVDs from some of the greatest design- and art-related publishers – Gestalten, Actar, Victionary, Warp, Plexifilm and others. It is also design studio, working in graphic, interior and product design. Says designer/curator/manager Bruce Cowie, “I was working as a designer at a specialist graphic boutique company called ‘thnkyvrymch, and I originally started Design is a good idea as a Facebook group, for me, my friends and other like-minded people to share ideas and inspirational design-related material.” The idea of combining our design studio with an exclusive design store happened almost accidentally, and so far it’s been working out really well.” “We are waiting to receive several very limited edition pieces that we have produced in collaboration with a German designer by the name of Lars Amhoff, and we are also in production with our own range of products.

We recently teamed up with a Hong Kong-based company called Hilton Qiu Products, who will be producing many of our pieces for us. The first Hilton Qiu Product is the ‘Millisecond’ vase series designed by myself, and produced using 3D printing technology, and the next project in production is a one-off glass-topped coffee table which has been completely hand engraved by my wife Qz and myself.”

When asked why he doesn’t stock more locally designed products, we hit a sore point about the state of design in South Africa. “Although social networking has brought designers and creatives closer together than ever before, I think there is still a lot of backstabbing, competitiveness and general bitchiness between different designers and collectives. However, I think people do help and support each other more than they have in the past.” “We plan to just keep expanding on what we have been doing, by tracking down unique special things that people don’t get to see or buy here easily. Our main focus right now is also to work on more of our own products,” says Bruce. In the end, Bruce wanted to create a shop “specifically aimed at people like me, who are huge fans of every aspect of design, and cater to their interests, no matter how obscure.” Soon it will take another turn when he opens the shop for launches, screenings and exhibitions. And that’s a great idea.

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feature/store

ideashop

storefronts for designisagoodidea.com

April 2009 – Lost in a forest

May 2009 – Greyscale

June 2009 – Yard Sale

July 2005 – Deconstruction Records/Cutout Collective

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feature/store

August 2009 – Cutout Collective/Tale of The Son

September 2009 – Marissa Pretorius

October 2009 – Designers’ Tools

November 2009 – Pantone

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feature/posters

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feature/posters

2010 art It’s official! For the 2010 FIFA World Cup, FIFA commissioned 17 international artists to create extraordinary football posters for the Official Art Poster Edition 2010. Distributed by David Krut Projects, the series features internationally renowned artists like Marlene Dumas, William Kentridge and Romero Britto alongside some exciting emerging talent

 Color Your Life (2008) Barthélémy Toguo – Toguo was born in M’Balmayo, Cameroon and settled in Germany after studying abroad. His migratory lifestyle relates the culture of globalisation while still expressing a strong affinity with his African heritage

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feature/posters

 The Battle (2008) Cameron Platter – Platter is a young South African artist whose work boldly quotes modern pop culture, both celebrating and critiquing it in a unique and stylised way  The Midas Touch (2009) Robert Slingsby – Slingsby’s sculptures and paintings centre on a type of personal myth-making that is reminiscent of cave art of the Khoi-San in the Cape. His mythological iconography is still highly relevant to the everyday state of affairs of South Africa

 Stadium (2009) Peter Eastman – Early in his  career, Eastman eschewed a formal arts education to be a full-time painter. This choice resonates in paintings that encourage the viewer to delve a bit deeper into the works to find their meaning

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feature/posters

 Bicycle Kick (2009) William Kentridge – Kentridge is a leading South African artist who had his first exhibition in 1979 and is internationally famous for his prints, drawings, films, animations, theatre and opera productions  Stadia (2004) Julie Mehretu – Mehretu is an Ethiopian-born artist who is known for her explosive and technically brilliant paintings and prints. Her work conveys architectural or draughtsman-like exactness

Football Miracle (2009) Zhong Biao – Making use of representations that resonate with both Chinese and Western culture, Biao has risen to stardom for works that offer sometimes strange and elusive meanings reminiscent of the contradictions of our global environment

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feature/design

the printing machine

Millisecond Vase Have you ever wondered what it would look like if a porcelain vase exploded in slow motion? Using virtual simulations, this vase was modeled in 3D and then destroyed a frame at a time. The three-dimensional data was captured at various intervals throughout the explosion. Designed by Bruce Cowie in collaboration with Hong Kong based luxury goods company Hilton Qiu.

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feature/design

that went to space 3D printing machines are so smart they can even print their own spare parts, writes Bruce Cowie

The first time I heard about three-dimensional printing was a couple of years ago on a Discovery Channel programme about NASA. The show was on ‘life in space’, and what it’s like to be an astronaut severed from reality and trapped in a tin can miles above the earth. Aboard the space station, astronauts had to learn how to operate a (fairly rudimentary) 3D printing machine, so that they could repair broken parts, switches, etc... by ‘printing’ new ones. It was a genius solution, because the space aboard the station is, well, limited, and there just wasn’t any room to keep spare parts. By having a small 3D printer on board, they could simply print spare parts when they needed them. I was blown away by this concept, and at first didn’t actually believe it to be true... At the time I assumed it was another of those brand new bleedingedge technologies that only people like NASA would ever have access to, and which would never find a place or purpose in the ‘real’ world. I was very wrong. 3D printing (or Rapid Prototyping as it’s sometimes called) continues to evolve and advance every day. The current standard resolution in 3D printing is more than double what it was only a year ago, meaning that ever higher quality pieces can be printed. As such it’s becoming very difficult to tell the difference between a one-off ‘prototype’ and a mass produced, finished product. Without getting too technical, 3D printing was originally based around two different approaches. The first kind was using liquified nylon or plastic to build items one layer at a time, almost like a regular ink jet printer, except in three dimensions instead of flat space. The second approach used powder based materials which are constructed and then set using lasers. This powder-based printing method has made huge advances, to the point that the possibilities have become completely

astonishing, and even quite far-fetched at times. It’s obvious that 3D printing and prototyping is of huge benefit to people like architects, industrial designers and product designers. Apple were one of the first product design companies I know of to use 3D printing to test different switches and buttons on their first generation iPods, and now the technology is in use at most industrial design studios around the world. Perhaps more interesting than the obvious applications of 3D printing is how the technology has made its way into many other industries as well. Just recently, we have read articles on how 3D printing is revolutionising the medical industry. Bone specialists and dentists have been using 3D printing for a while, as a tool to simplify and speed up the process of testing joints and trying out new ideas without hurting teeth or bones. This has now advanced to the point that actual functioning parts can be printed and used inside human bodies. By harvesting human cells, new organs like bladders can actually be printed from scratch, using harvested human cells in place of the regular ceramic materials normally used for printing! The Walter Reed Army Medical Center, in Washington DC, is using 3D printing to create physical anatomical models to aid in performing delicate surgeries. Using 3D scanning, they transform the captured information into 3D files, apply accurate colour to the resulting digital models, and then use a 3D printer to produce full-colour working models. These models can be held and examined from all angles, which helps surgeons get a better idea of what issues they may face during surgery. Neurosurgeons have found this idea very useful, as they can now make models of aneurysms and Arteriovenous malformations to help them perform delicate surgeries.

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feature/make

In this way, surgeons can know in advance the anatomical structures of the patient, rather than discovering them after the incision is made, thus lessening the possibility of blood loss and infections. The new generation 3D printers on the market can now print in almost any material you can think of – from plastic to semi precious metal and glass. As a designer, I am obviously more interested in what can be done with Rapid Prototyping in the design world. I see a time in the future where the technology becomes cheaper, and everyone will have access to it. Instead of going to a furniture or home décor store and choosing an item for your home, you could simply download a model of whatever it is you want and print it yourself. It also opens up a world of opportunities for anyone wishing to make their own products, without spending unrealistic amounts of money on mass production. Here are a few pointers for design-related applications for 3D printing: Freedom of Creation This company has been around for over ten years, specialising in printing limited-edition interior design pieces. All of their products are ‘virtual’ – they don’t actually exist. You select the item you want from a catalogue, and they print it for you. freedomofcreation.com Protoform A South African company that specializes in Rapid Prototyping. They have been a lot of help in answering all my questions and helping me to get started with some of my own 3D printing projects. protoform.co.za Michaella Janse van Vuuren/Nomili A South African designer who created the ‘Chrysanthemum Centrepiece’, a reversible design that can function as either a bowl or candle holder, depending on which side of the design faces upwards. Direct three-dimensional manufacturing methods, such as Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) used to create the work allow for the design of intricate textures and objects. These textures and objects would have been impossible to execute by hand, yet the centrepiece still retains the beauty and tactile feeling of a natural object. behance.net Rapid 3D A South African Rapid Prototyping company run by Gavin Leggot. Leggot has been incredibly helpful with our experiments, and in sorting out the technical difficulties of the Millisecond Vase. rapid3d.co.za. _Bruce Cowie runs Design is a Good Idea in Jo’burg

There’s been a lot of talk about possible applications for 3D printing, but Johnny Kelly’s new TV titles are the first time we’ve seen it used in animation. The title sequence is for Dutch TV programme Het Klokhuis (The Apple Core). Agency KesselsKramer commissioned Johnny Kelly and artist Jethro Haynes to collaborate and make the sequence.

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Motion Sketch Furniture Sweden’s all girl design team, Front, have experimented with 3D printing in really interesting ways. They use motion-capture cameras to record themselves while they ‘draw’ images of furniture in mid-air. The data is then transformed into physical models based on what they have drawn, and the end result is printed as a functional piece of furniture.

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54 ENJIN MAR/APR 2010


review analysis, reviews, opinion, perspective, trends, commeNT

design

indaba

interview

the a

open

very

with

postmortem panos

window

cold

profiled

case

photographers

’

panoussis

indeed

cards

Cape Town Underground infographic by Coley Porter Bell

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 55


review/event

review

Design Indaba 2010 is over but not forgotten

Two of the most over-hyped presentations of the Indaba were those by trend forecaster Li Edelkoort and Martha Stewart. Edelkoort returns to Design Indaba year after year, and year after year the local design press hangs on her every word. She started with the obvious, namely that the ‘new man’ is a publicly tender man, one that can display public affection to his children. She stayed with the obvious, talking about sisterhoods of girlfriends, or all-girl nights out and how it has a flexible group dynamic, and allows the boys to have they own get-togethers. Kids and their parents are bonding again for the first time in years, according to Edelkoort, and there is a new and strong economic bond between kids and their grandparents. Who knew kids only recently figured out how to milk the old folks! All this bonding and sensitivity leads her to conclude that we need to create merchandise that relates to us like pets and with their own auras. There you go, leash your Coke Light and smoke some crazy joints, I guess, ‘cause that’s the only way sweet commercialism is going to pop a kindly aura for you. Her comment that designer yellow is the new pink had journalists typing away furiously. We swiftly moved on to ‘the bordello of the 21st century’ – a place Edelkoort imagines as a pleasure mall for the whole family, where sex is the overall idea even if it does not lead to the actual ‘act’. One delegate was moved to tweet that “Edelkoort’s whorehouse family mall vision terrifies me”. Indeed.

The worst in history

But it was architect Alejandro Aravena who wowed the audience with his approach to social housing. Aravena views design as the strategic use of form, and creativity as “what you do when there is not enough knowledge.” He works on the basis that design should be relevant, precise and irreducible. Aravena was clear in his belief that creativity will not change the world. “It’s because the world changes that we need to be creative.” He believes cities are powerful tools to create wealth and provide shortcuts towards global equality. This means it’s imperative for investment to focus on public infrastructure, public space, housing and transport. It’s in respect of housing that Aravena astounds with his realistic, people-focused approach to design. Social housing means limited budgets which translate into what South Africans know as HOP houses. Small, 40m2, box-like homes.

Which half? Facing this reality, a designer should accept that families will add informal structures to their homes. If you can build half a house, the question becomes, “Which half ”? The answer, says Aravena, is the half that families cannot build themselves. So he focused on some key issues out of the hands of the families who will end up living in the social grant homes he designs. These include location, urban lay-out, positioning of units, structure and providing middle income DNA to the housing. Since a social grant for housing is the most money any household will

Stewart, the most high-profile speaker at the Indaba, gave what was by all accounts the worst presentation in Design Indaba history. It led to a mass exodus of students in the simulcast room, shortly followed by a substantial walk-out in the main auditorium. This is unprecedented in Design Indaba history. Partly at least this speaks to the exceptional quality of the event and the majority of its speakers. Even nervous speakers such as Faith47 and Ronan Bouroullec proved to be charming and inspiring and both were very well received. The problem with Stewart’s presentation lay in its blatant self-promotion and near complete lack of anything resembling a design orientation. It’s a pity because she is a hard-nosed entrepreneur that successfully manages a media empire specialising in design for mass audiences, be it in print or online. Delegates turned to Twitter to vent their disappointment, leading to a rather entertaining ‘twitterslap’, followed by escapees on the Bizcommunity twitterfall broadcasting outside the auditorium.

Stood out Two presentations stood out on day three. The first was that of Christien Meindertsma, a truly amazing designer who presented on her One Sheep, One Cardigan project, as well as on her other products using wool. The image of the giant, hand-knitted, woollen rug she created may well be the most beautiful object showcased at the Indaba.

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Delegates turned to Twitter to vent their disappointment, leading to a rather entertaining ‘twitterslap’.

receive from the state, it is important to provide it to these families as an investment that will grow in value. Which means location is all important. Araveno seeks to pool social grants to buy better value land close to where families work, and then create units that also provide structure for future informal additions that still ensure overcrowding don’t become an issue and that the units continue to grow in value. The South African Ministry of Housing would do well to engage with its Chilean counterparts on the issue of social grant housing and the successes with which Araveno’s projects have been met in that country. For me, Araveno’s solution-oriented approach, his asking of critical questions, and his genuine interest in the people who will inhabit his structures, are what designers and the public in South Africa really need exposure to. There are answers out there, and they are even more humane than we dared imagine. _Herman Manson is MarkLives. You can visit Marklives at www.marklives.com or at twitter.com/marklives


review

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 57


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Autodesk and Smoke are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries. Mac OS is a trademark of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries. All other brand names, product names, or trademarks belong to their respective holders. Autodesk reserves the right to alter product offerings and specifications at anytime without notice, and is not responsible for typographical or graphical errors that may appear in this document. © 2009 Autodesk, Inc. All rights reserved.

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review

review/campaign

Design Indaba Superstars

The search was on for eleven individuals to represent a national creative team. Design Indaba 2010 asked South Africans from every walk of life and age to express their creativity online: and stand a chance to become a Design Indaba Superstar. The judging panel included sports personality and design student, Percy Montgomery; MD of Grid advertising agency, Nathan Reddy; fine artist Nandipha Mntambo; and design director of Jupiter Drawing Room Cape Town, Joanne Thomas. The campaign received over 400 entries. The eleven Superstars chosen were: Kate Butcher (24) – Designer / Illustrator Greg Darroll (22) – Graphic Designer / Illustrator Samantha Immelman (11) – Scholar Farhana Jacobs (23) – Graduate George Kellerman (76) – Office Administrator Lavanya Naidoo (22) – Graphic Designer Giulia Odendaal (34) – Set Designer Nhlanhla Peega (27) – Creative Director Guy Trangos (25) – Architect Thandiwe Tshabalala (22) – Student

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review/AGENCY

review

The accountable ad agency. By Herman Manson

Mike Abel never blinks. Literally. Or at least he didn’t through this interview, the two of us and Chief Creative Partner Peter Badenhorst stuffed into a corner table at the Loading Bay Café, a coffee shop below the new M&C Saatchi Abel offices in De Waterkant, the former gay quarter of Cape Town, now trendily mainstream.

Zeyad Davids, another of the partners in the business, later tells me that within large corporations there is now a growing and already significant focus on measuring the impact of marketing expenditure, beyond the typical, but broad ‘awareness’ measure. He should know, having run the digital marketing and CRM strategy team for Deloitte.

For two guys who have helped direct and drive some very mainstream brands to success their talk is decidedly alternative. Not in the ‘fuck-ismy-favourite-word sense’ (though it might well their favourite word) but rather in their take on the ad agency they want to build. For them advertising is all about – wait for it – accountability. The accountable ad agency. Sounds a bit like designer beer, airline food or business ethics doesn’t it. You’d think a new oxymoron has just seen the Wiki.

“Understanding that no two clients are identical, part of my role will be to apply a proprietary thought process whereby we work with our clients

But wait, they are serious, and to prove it they are devising metrics that will form part of every brief to measure both clients’ return on investment and determinants of success. Badenhorst says that ad agencies have always been a force unto themselves. They compare themselves with other ad agencies, rank themselves though industry awards and have had little incentive to look beyond the rather narrow parameters of their own industry to notice business is changing. “We have been doing the wrong thing exceedingly well,” says Badenhorst, “rather than fulfilling clients’ business requirements.” Abel adds that he wants to build an agency of depth and capability. He believes the economic recession means that M&C Saatchi Abel’s skills sets are more valuable to business than during better economic times when less is at stake and profits come more easily.

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“I realise that all through the interview I never once thought that the no bullshit agency might be bullshit. Frankly the ad industry cannot afford it to be.” to define up-front a scorecard of success measures based on the tangible business outcomes they need our work to achieve,” says Davids (OK, just remember the guy worked for Deloitte). “The success of our strategy and campaign execution will then be measured against this scorecard, irrespective of the channels we use to reach the market. Our tool takes into account actual shift in sales volume, primary research, response channel activity, web metrics and other customer benchmarks.” The agency currently employees seventeen people, and Abel says he will spend the time before their first clients sign on training his staff. (They have in the interim signed up their first client – The Rezidor Hotel Group


review/agency

Liza Whitehead – Junior Copywriter; Maximilian Pazak – Junior Art Director; Brett Bruton – Junior Art Director

From left to right: Peter Badenhorst – Chief Creative Partner; Moray Maclennan – Worldwide CEO of M&C Saatchi; Zeyad Davids – Managing Partner: Digital, Direct & Data; Mike Abel – Chief Executive Partner ; Absent – Denise vd Westhuizen – Chief Operating Partner

- Ed). He sees M&C Saatchi as a collaboration of minds rather than sets of egos. He claims to be fielding CVs from numerous creatives, even managing directors sharing the founding team’s vision of what an agency should be about – namely growing clients’ market share. Abel expects it to take three to six months before business starts rolling his way. He claims to have the financial backing to weather this period without a problem. Between the lines it’s clear that Abel, Badenhorst and the rest of the team are confident of a positive reception from former clients. Ogilvy may rightly give pause for thought. They know us, he says, and we have had amazing client relationships in the past. The agency, says Abel, is capturing the imagination of many in the industry, and as many marketers, with its ‘no bullshit’ attitude. I ask Abel how the South African agency environment compares with that of Australia where he served a stint as the CEO of the M&C Saatchi Group Australia. Abel says that while on the surface there are many similarities, the best advice he received on going over was from somebody who told him that South Africans play to win and Australians play not to loose. South Africa has a frontier economy while in Australia they play it safer. He found it creatively conservative with agency people scared to stand out for fear of being taken down – tall poppy syndrome is alive and well there. That said, business organisations expect a clear ROI from their agency, more so than in South Africa.

larger marketing process. The notion of a digital stand-alone agency is obsolete. “Digital is no longer the future,” says Abel. “It is now.” He came back for personal reasons – his wife was unhappy in Australia – and while he learned a lot, he believes South African management already plays on a global stage. “They couldn’t teach me anything about managing an ad agency,” Abel says. We head up to the M&C Saatchi Abel offices upstairs. Basically it’s still a construction site with computer terminals clustered in the centre of the open office space. Three of the four corner offices are still incomplete. The views are spectacular. I realise that all through the interview I never once thought that the no bullshit agency might be bullshit. Frankly the ad industry cannot afford it to be. Business models need to evolve and to innovate or the industry will become unsustainable. If M&C Saatchi Abel walks the talk it will bring renewed energy to an industry increasingly isolated from reality behind awards shows won by ‘pro-active work.’ _Herman Manson is MarkLives. You can visit Marklives at www.marklives.com or at twitter.com/marklives

Marketing decisions are also taken at CEO level in Australia, and pitches are made to both the CEO and marketing director. Digital is core to any marketer’s thinking in Australia, and not simply a division within the

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review/magazine

review

The case is cold. By Herman Manson

Future Publishing has launched case. (the full stop is part of the title folks). <- this is ours It’s tagged ‘the business of creativity.’ <- also ours Mike Schalit seems to be the face of the business of creativity with which I can find no fault. <- yup Future Publishing also publishes The Annual and The Journal. As titles go case. seems like quite a leap in the imaginative prowess of the publishers. I would have bet a week’s pay on something like The Creative. Maybe the industry bodies endorsing the new title, namely the Association for Communication and Advertising (ACA) and the Creative Circle, intervened. case., writes editor Jeremy Maggs, is “dedicated to single-mindedly articulate excellence and value in advertising.” In this magazine advertising as an industry finally gets to state its case, according to Maggs, adding that the title will target cynical CEOs and brand and marketing executives. I’m not trying to be cynical or anything but there seems to be a formula to all the articles. Short intro or headline formulating the question followed by pages and pages of creatives having their say (quoted verbatim). It’s great for the budget but where is the journalism? Also, I have to quote the

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intro to the profile piece on James Cloete because, well it’s a case in point: “What’s it like inside the mind of James Cloete?” The Draftfcb executive creative director throws the question I’ve just asked back at me. “It’s kind of like a big, dark cave, with a big pink-grey sponge in the middle of it – except that the walls of the cave are made of bone and the big sponge is actually a brain (of sorts). Flippancy aside, the big sponge has been doing some thinking – and these are the topics that have it going,” etc. Run Mr Cynical Executive run! Of course the advertising industry is overjoyed at finally having a publication stating its case with such intellect and flair. case. kindly included its media pack (read rate card) with the launch edition. You can score a full page colour ad for only R11,244. Pity no-one took them up on their offer. The launch issue contained no ads. Nada. Niks. Grid got the OBC, but they also designed the book, so it was probably a quid pro quo. Mmm earth to ad industry – I think you just shot down you case. _Herman Manson is MarkLives. You can visit Marklives at www.marklives.com or at twitter.com/marklives


review/FILM

review

The Initiative for Motion Pictures within the African Continent gathers steam IMPAC is a project initiated by Pluto Panoussis, head of the film department at The Open Window. Described as an annual short-film festival event that explores the moving image, it provides a platform for the exhibition of innovative African audio-visual media. The goal of the festival is to promote the viewing of experimental cinema and to encourage the making of exploratory films by South Africans. “People tend to shy away when they hear the word experimental,” says Pluto, “but there are many joys to be found in this form of audio-visual expression. The short films shown at IMPAC last year prove this – they ranged in expression from comic to punk to pure conceptual, while treatment ranged from film to animation to new media. They were all connected, however, in their wholehearted attempt to explore the possibilities of expression available within the moving image.” The festival was a big hit considering the nature of its content, and the fact that it is trying to access a largely uninitiated market. There was a strong presence by young people particularly, which was very encouraging. Last year’s festival showcased work by film and animation students at Open Window, but will extend its boundaries this year to include films from all South African institutions and, in time, will call for entries across Africa. IMPAC was born out of Pluto’s experience at The Open Window . He took over the film and video department at the school about four years ago, and structured a course that focuses on developing an understanding of film language elements and how they are applied across the board – from corporate audio-visual work to highly personalized experimental expressions in the medium. “The audio-visual medium, so familiar to most young people, is also one of the least explored in terms of its possibilities for personal expression,” says Pluto. “Once the awareness that the conceptual tools one is working with are sight, sound and motion – the very substance of life, memory and dream, a process of self-reflection kicks in. Meaning is initiated, and the medium now leaves the familiar territory entrenched by years of popular television and cinema to become a powerful tool for individual creative expression.” “By getting students to understand not only the mechanics of the medium, but also the dynamics of personal experience and how one transforms that experience into a viable audio-visual style, the idea is to cultivate a generation of filmmakers that is able to assimilate and present the South African experience in a variety of meaningful and unpredictable ways.” In the process of doing this, Pluto discovered that by initially relieving students of the responsibility of being tied to a specific definition of self – culture, gender, history, sexual preference, race and so on, he could create a space that allows for a strong creative impulse to take over. Once the student discovers his or her creative identity, the more subtle nuances of specificity can be integrated into that identity. Pluto maintains that a healthy industry is made up of a prevalent mainstream that embraces the traditional arm of the industry on one side, and the exploratory end on

the other. All three expressions need to move forward simultaneously for that industry to flourish. Given that IMPAC’s objective is to foster the exploratory arm of the motion picture industry on the African continent, emphasis is placed on innovation – not so much a reliance on innovative technology as the innovative use of available technology. “When selecting work for the festival, we are looking primarily at the sophistication of the audio-visual idea, and how well that has been integrated with the technology at the disposal of that filmmaker.” With the understanding that today’s exploratory work feeds into tomorrow’s mainstream industry, the concerns of IMPAC are placed, not in opposition to the commercial film industry in Africa, but as an initiative to see what African filmmakers can achieve if their creativity is encouraged to find an identity that is uniquely their own within the global community of filmmakers and audio-visual artists. The festival is scheduled to run from the 20th to the 25th of August. “We are planning quite an ambitious festival, with screenings, audio-visual art installations, international speakers, workshops and a closing night performance that further explores the concept of the moving image – in this case we are looking at showcasing an exciting collaboration between a South African dancer, Jacki Job and Japanese Butoh master, Yoshito Ohno.” Submissions for this year’s festival open in June.

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REVIEW/profile

review

The Open Window School

The Open Window School of Visual Communication recently relocated to the Southdowns precinct in Centurion. To complement its peerless academic programme, the facility now offers a tranquil yet vibrant learning space, where the rustic and the urban, the nostalgic and the contemporary exist in one space. The campus is situated immediately adjacent a pastoral dairy farm which, together with the spaciousness of Southdown’s Estate, act as backdrop to imaginative and inventive learning experiences. The spacious campus houses the SAX building, which is an embodiment of the synergy between art and sport. The building ensures that learning does not take place in a vacuum, as it boasts a state-of-the-art gymnasium, ballet studio, music studios, two separate editing suites for both pre-and postproduction, a production warehouse, a top-notch recording studio, a world-class conference hall, a café and an advertising company. The Open Window (TOW) offers a unique approach to learning. The success of The Open Window is derived from the symbiotic relationship between subjects. The academic programme is based on a foundation year that culminates in specialisation in the senior years. The areas of specialisation are represented by the four faculties of design, which include Design studies, Audiovisual studies (Film & Animation), Interactive media design, Form and Space design. The content of various academic subjects is adapted and redefined as the demands of the industry changes. The core function of a given discipline is identified and becomes the primary focus of study; secondary disciplines stand in its service. This approach culminates in learner competencies with immediate commercial application. Supporting the notion of industry related subjects is the close contact the school has with the industry. Third year students participate in an experiential learning programme, which requires them to seek work in the design industry. Briefs executed for actual clients form part of the students’ final portfolios. From this year, TOW has an Internship Programme with Luma Animation Studios in Johannesburg. Luma specialises in creating animated content for television, cinema, multimedia as well as gaming platforms, and provides students with content to animate for actual clients. This synergy exposes animation students to invaluable experience while still studying, and many Open Window students are permanently employed at Luma. The divide between education and commercial application of skills crumble as real projects becomes part of the academic syllabus. Illustration students use this traditional medium in an enterprising manner in the annual Philatelic Services stamp design project. Their designs were selected and printed by the Post Office as part of the FIFA Soccer World Cup campaign. The first ever 3D stamps were illustrated and designed by an Open Window student and printed by the Post Office – issued complete with a pair of viewing glasses! Another project that merges with the existing curriculum is the South African Banknote Society’s annual banknote design competition, in

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which Open Window students are (mostly) placed in the top three positions. Synergies such as these ensure exposure to real-world creative processes, since students receive guidance and feedback from experienced animators while still studying. Industry experts form part of the evaluation committee in order to ensure relevant standards. Part of bridging the divide between industry and education is the introduction of short training programmes, which are tailored for professionals seeking to hone and update their practical skills. A selection of fundamental to advanced courses include Animation, Game and Interactive, Fine Arts, Design Studies, IT & Software, Web Design, Sound Production and Puppetry. Within specific disciplines, there might also be a selection of genres to choose from. For example, photography workshops may combine technology-oriented skills such as camera and computer literacy with photographic genres such as fashion, wildlife, landscape and travel, architecture, photojournalism, underwater and nude photography. Specialists in their respective fields guide students to arrive at the desired results. Short training programmes therefore supplement the existing academic programme. All workshops run from April to June 2010.

The aim is the creation of human-centered products that are also commercially viable.

Forever aiming at higher academic standards, 2010 sees the introduction of an Honours degree, which provides the individual with the opportunity to specialise in a chosen field of interest. The aim is to provide a qualification that is accessible for employed professionals as well as graduates from other institutions. TOW aims to keep this degree relevant by recognising prior learning. The eighteen-month course is comprised of four components: research methodology (which finds fruition in the writing of a research report), business practice, an internship programme and a practical component. The theoretical component requires the critical articulation of a position as well as independent research. The practical project aims to develop a personal style, underpinned by sufficient conceptual depth. The practical component consists of two parts: an industry related project as well as an individual project. In this manner, the Honours degree is driven by the immediate needs of the industry. The Open Window is therefore more accessible than ever. In terms of location (ideally located to accommodate students from Johannesburg and Pretoria), subject choice (from Illustration to Product Design) and academic range (from honours to short programmes).


REVIEW

Design forward At The Open Window, new concepts of Design Thinking and Vision of Product Design are breaking down the barriers between various traditional design disciplines. The likes of Tim Brown (CEO of IDEO) and Paul Hekkert (Industrial Design at Delft University) promulgate new ideas where we look for a variety of appropriate solutions rather than just solving present-day problems. After attending conferences, one often goes away pondering the importance of an interdisciplinary future. For example, our own Design Indaba covers themes such as sustainable design, products and alternative visions for the future presented by architects, product designers, engineers, graphic and fashion designers. It would appear that the future of design demands a wider engagement than just problem-solving. Concerned about our ecology and future existence, sensible designers realize that the world does not need more solutions to more problems; we need appropriate designs that act and interact with people and the environment. It is only within this context and these interactions that products obtain value and meaning. If a new product does not fall into this context, or does not qualify for the wider domain of a multidisciplinary approach, they are doomed to become “just another gadget”. Innovation lies within the appropriateness of these relationships. The iPhone, for example, quickly became the best selling mobile phone, not because it a good phone, but because it offers an excellent user experience. The school believes in its vision to be part of this responsible and interdisciplinary future by establishing a groundbreaking new Product Design course from 2011. The Open Window’s advisory committee boasts some of South Africa’s best product designers. Product design aims to enrich the portfolio of the designer with content circumscribed by a variety of skills – ranging from the aesthetic to engineering. As such the product designer becomes the individual who possess excellent left- as well as right brain capabilities. Such an individual is sufficiently sensitive to envision the object’s aesthetic appeal, yet technologically inclined to create an ergonomically functional product. _Anette Barnard is a lecturer in visual culture at The Open Window

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AP Y PL NO

Qualify with a hot 21st century business degree

W !

‘A very comprehensive academic degree, totally unique and unlike the current curricula offered elsewhere.’ - DR THOMAS OOSTHUIZEN Traditional business degrees do not equip graduates to negotiate the triple bottom line, integral to today’s economy. Traditional commerce degrees do not have a brand-centric approach that underpins an enterprise to make meaningful difference to its stakeholders. Traditional communications degrees ignore the complexities of the South African economic, social and political landscape.

This groundbreaking 3 year degree in Brand Building and Management underscores the importance of a hybrid approach to strategic, financial and creative business solutions. Visionary thinkers understand that differentiation from the other 20 000 BCom students who will graduate in 2013 requires radical innovation. Vega’s integrated methodology is designed for the realities of business today and drives the mavericks of tomorrow.

JHB 011 521 4600 CT 021 425 7591 DBN 031 266 2595 Call us today or visit vegaschool.com Join The Official VEGA School Group on Facebook

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Work smarter, Vega The Brand Communications School is an educational brand of The Independent Institute of Education (Pty) Ltd which is registered with the Department of Education as a private further and higher education and training institution under the Further Education and Training Colleges Act, 2006 (reg. no. 2009/FE07/003, prov. to 31/12/2014) and the Higher Education Act, 1997 (reg. no. 2007/HE07/002).

not harder…

Higher efficiency, smarter functionality, easier integration

To e s i t r e v d a in ENJIN call 7 6 0 5 5 4 4 084

Enfocus announces PitStop Pro 09 and PitStop Server 09. These new versions of Enfocus’ industry-leading and indispensable tools for editing, checking and fixing PDF files include significant enhancements that streamline desktop and server-based processing of PDF files in fast-paced printing and publishing environments.

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connecting designers, publishers & printers at 66 ENJIN MAR/APR 2010

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call me

CHRIS SAUNDERS

www.theartoflight.co.za

curzon road, bryanston (+27) 072-277-5532 nboucry@iburst.co.za

Nathalie Boucry Photography

review/photographers’ cards

PHOTOGRAPHER / DIRECTOR

WEB IMAGINATION.CO.ZA BLOG CHRISSAUNDERSSA.BLOGSPOT.COM SKYPE MRMOFOSAUNDERS MAIL CHRIS@IMAGINATION.CO.ZA MOBILE 27 82 3343404 AGENT JOHANNESBURG 27 11 7262670 CAPE TOWN 27 21 5551234 REST OF WORLD FILL IN YOUR NUMBER HERE

ENJIN MAR/APR 2010 67


the same but new

Introducing 4 new shimmer colours

whiteshimmer grey shimmer

natural Blue shimmer Shimmer

With all the qualities you have come to expect from this leading business paper, Opaleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s latest range of papers now also offers striking new characteristics including a recycled FSC option as well as the famous environmental accreditation FSC. If you have not yet received your brochure please call your Antalis Sales Representative. For further information, contact us on: marketing.print@antalis.co.za or +27 11 688 6000

Work produced on this paper is eligible for Art of Design 2010.

68 ENJIN MAR/APR 2010


ENJIN Magazine 48