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This Book Is Different

This Book Is Different by Brian Molepo and Mzwakhe Ndlovu

This Book Is Different

 

Having met around early 2011 photographer Brian Molepo and interior design student with an eye and knack for the graphics Mzwakhe Ndlovu would hang out as friends and fellow young creatives constantly sharing ideas, thoughts and feedback with each other. Finding common ground with regards to art and design, and their heroes Miles Davis and Helmut Newton, the two decided to collaborate. Mzwakhe describes himself and Brian as ‘archive guys’, interested in the creative greats that came before, but adds, “we only look back so we can know what to do, change, add or subtract from the greats that could influence our work now and help us advance.”

 

Mzwakhe is an interior design student but it would be more apt to call him an all-round creative based on his work with advertising and activation firms and the multiple identities he has created for all types of businesses ranging from medical to fashion. “In essence, he says, “I focus on many aspects of creativity to try and find a way to merge them into ‘non-creative’ sectors and show people how much design and art really means. To me, the future is having an in-house designer in a hospital for example, working on new packaging ideas or spatial issues or designing signage.”

 

Brian describes himself and his style as, “high-fashion and edgy”, saying, “I wanna take my work to the world. I want it to end up in international magazines. I want to become one of the great photographers of timeless artistry.”

 

Both wanting to work together, Mzwakhe proposed designing a book featuring Brian’s photography. He says, “While compiling the book I realised something – what he did was more than fashion photography, it was completely different. I saw his work as pieces of documents that could be compiled in a way that will make them a record of a certain period in time when the youth were free to think, dress, speak, look and feel however they want to.” Prompted by this Mzwakhe paired the idea of documenting the youth with his own young and free graphic and layout style to create a piece of work that is relevant to today. The book appears as a collection of fashion photographs but also exists as an archival piece – a documentary about the people, art and design styles of today.

 

Plans for the second edition are already underway. Brian says, “‘Different’ was a great way for both of us to join our skills, vision and knowledge to create something that merges a lot of concepts and messages seamlessly. So, the next volume might be different from this one completely in execution, size and hopefully it will be printed and accompanied by some video.”

 

Find the project in full at thisbookisdifferent.tumblr.com

 

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