Behind the design – Graphic Africa cushions

We’ve already introduced the designers taking part in our Graphic Africa exhibition at Platform for London Design Festival on the blog. Anyone who has popped into our London flagship stores will have noticed you can buy a bit of the exhibition, too.

The Graphic Africa cushion collection was developed in Senegal and is a collaboration between Habitat’s senior designer for textile & colour, Rebecca Hoyes, and textile designer Boubacar Doumbia.

Boubacar is an expert on the textile design technique of bogalan. The artist works with mud or clay and paints the background of the woven cotton cloth leaving the outline of the of the pattern untouched.

Rebecca describes her time working with Doumbia as truly inspiring. ‘Fishermen brought the mud from the Niger river and we worked through the designs in the extreme Senegalese heat. I wanted to explore the contemporary possibilities of the technique. I’m so happy with the results.’

While the design process happened in Senegal, the cushions themselves have been produced in Doumbia’s manufacturing studios in Mali which is run as a social enterprise training young people in textile production and developing their business skills.

The Graphic Africa cushions are available exclusively at our London stores, priced £30 each. They’re selling out fast!


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