Africa and innovation are two words that, if you listened only to the popular narrative of the continent, don’t seem like they belong together. Much of the innovation and astounding creativity in design, art, media, and technology is happening seemingly (to us) in off the grid towns and villages — but luckily, we can see some of it on the internet, too. On AfriGadget, which I’ve been following for a long time, the most brilliant and unlikely inventions both practical and luxurious are featured from across the continent. And on African Digital Art, which I recently ran into, there is photography, art, design, film, and music from the whole of the African diaspora, including places like the island Guyana, which is where the photographer who took the above photo, Kwesi Abbensetts, is from.
The range of invention and self-sufficiency across this huge, diverse continent is kind of overwhelming. I want to one day take a trip to the annual Maker Faire Africa — being held this year in Cairo — and get in on this “celebration of African ingenuity.”