Saki Mafundikwa

Ingenuity and elegance in ancient African alphabets

8:10 •
Filmed Jan 2013 at TED2013
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From simple alphabets to secret symbolic languages, graphic designer Saki Mafundikwa celebrates the many forms of written communication across the continent of Africa. He highlights the history and legacy that are embodied in written words and symbols, and urges African designers to draw on these graphic forms for fresh inspiration. It's summed up in his favorite Ghanaian glyph, Sankofa, which means "return and get it" — or "learn from the past."

Saki Mafundikwa
/ Graphic designer

Saki Mafundikwa wrote the book on Africa’s graphic design heritage — then opened a school of graphic arts in his native Zimbabwe.  Full bio.

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