While I come across plenty of home decor pieces that inspire my sense of style and speak to my aesthetics, it's definitely rare to discover a piece of furniture that inspires my hopes and dreams. The Dreams for Africa Chair by Woza Moya is just that such a chair. The winner of the Most Beautiful Object in South Africa (MBOISA) award at the international design show Design Indaba Expo in Cape Town, the Dreams for Africa Chair invites people from all walks of life to sit in the chair and share their dreams.
The chair was created two years ago by 160 women from the Valley of 1,000 Hills in KwaZulu-Natal, who created the chair through Woza Moya, an income generation project of the Hillcrest AIDS Centre Trust These women use their crafting and art skills to earn an income, with Woza Moya currently representing over 200 crafters, marketing their goods.
The inspiration for the chair, according to the Hillcrest AIDS centre, came from the women themselves, who were understandably overwhelmed by their diagnosis and the basic survival of their children and families. "We wanted to make people dream again and encourage powerful positive thoughts about our futures and of course our beautiful country. To restore hope. So started our Dreams for Africa series.These are going to be collaborative 'art' pieces that challenge us as crafters."
Featuring local craftsmanship and Zulu beadwork, the chair is now on a tour of South Africa and beyond. Take a look at some South Africans photographed with the chair, and read about the dreams they share.