MAMBOKADZI: Reimagining Digital Africa

Paper
, Simphiwe Xulu

MAMBOKADZI is a completely original deck of playing cards presented as an interactive art exhibition exploring African cultural symbols as part of MWX in the MW17 Exhibit Hall. Through an integration of expertise in augmented reality, game design and Interactive arts, this project seeks to explore ideals of modern African art and gaming experiences.

This critically acclaimed talk on symbolism will challenge you to reimagine the African continent’s digital landscape. Specifically looking at Africa’s rich history of languages including urban culture slang, words and phrases and how these can be represented through the use of symbols and technology.

Team Behind MAMBOKADZI Playing Cards

Regina Kgatle; Founder of Educade and 67games | South Africa

Regina is the founder and MD of Educade [http://educade.co.za/], and its sister non-profit startup, 67games. At Educade, Regina focuses on designing and building educational games. Regina has received numerous national and international awards for her groundbreaking work .

Vuyi Chaza; Graphic Designer & Social Media Consultant | Zimbabwe

Vuyi’s designs have appeared on billboards, publications, books and album covers. Vuyi hopes to create spaces and opportunities where women in Zimbabwe can pursue a career in digital arts, while shaping the narrative surrounding women and Zimbabwe.

Cebo Simphiwe Xulu; New Media Artist & Founder of Something Else Design Studio | South Africa

Xulu creates projects that bring the art, online and tech worlds into the same conversation. In 2015, his project #Selfie25, was selected as one of the 17 most innovative projects in South Africa by the Arts & Culture Trust of South Africa.

Bibliography:
1) Saki Mafundikwa: Ingenuity & Elegance in African Alphabets
https://www.ted.com/talks/saki_mafundikwa_ingenuity_and_elegance_in_ancient_african_alphabets?language=en

2) Symbolism & Implications in the Zulu Dance Forms (2007) by Vusabantu Ngema

3) Colour Coding and its Meaning in Zulu Womens Beadwork (2002) by C.B.S Xulu

4) History of Court Cards http://www.wopc.co.uk/cards/courts

5) Singer, Samuel Weller (1816), Researches into the History of Playing Cards,

6) History of Playing Cards http://i-p-c-s.org/faq/history.php

7) Adinkra Symbols http://www.adinkra.org/htmls/adinkra_index.htm

8) Saki Mafundikwa: Afrikan Alphabets: The Story of Writing in Afrika