This post is inspired by Saki Mafundikwa’s Ted Talk on Ingenuity and Elegance in Ancient African Alphabets. He specifically hits on the subject of typography in this talk, but his main point that Africa has much to contribute to the world of graphic design is important wisdom to heed for that of the global design world as a whole. He articulates so well something I’ve been feeling over the past year but hadn’t thought to express myself; that young African designers would benefit from looking within themselves, and to the cultural riches of the continent for inspiration, instead of looking externally for it.

Bantu Typography Illustration by Saki Mafundikwa

Saki talks more here on the African Digital Art about Eurocentric approaches to typography that many times are incompatible with the experiences of artists in Africa, and the need for mutual and respectful collaboration in design between Africa and the West.

“The Afrikan’s sense of color and rhythm is unique to the continent.” – Saki Mafundikwa