Sindiso Nyoni for Woolworths, RE:Denim


Anyone who’s had a glimpse of Sindiso Nyoni’s creative work understands that it was only a matter of time before his art found its way into your wardrobe, and not just your walls.

The 30 year old artist was approached by Woolworths in 2013 for an exclusive collaboration on the RE:Denim project. Meant to appeal to the urban, eccentric, fun loving youth, the denim inspired capsule collection is set to be released early next month in South African outlets. One can only hope that his eclectic designs will also find it’s way into the Kenyan Woolworths stores, shortly after.

We got an exclusive interview with the artist extraodinaire, also known as R!OT, who gave us a snippet of what to expect from the collaboration.

  1. Describe your artwork in three words.

Engaging…times three!

  1. How did this collaboration come about?

It was the result of some ‘name dropping’ via my good friend and fellow artist Fhatuweni Mukheli of ‘I See A different You’. The guys at RE:Denim then contacted me late last year to collaborate on the graphic tees series citing their appreciation of my “street style” and local take on art and subject matter.  They looked to working with me as a way to connect to, and communicate with the young South African popular culture.

RE: is all about denim.  And denim has always been a part of youth culture.  From the Rebel without a cause – to hippies, punks, skaters, surfers, hip hop, rappers – denim has been the constant.  With this in mind, RE:Denim used this collaboration as an opportunity to connect with a new and exciting South African youth culture.” Luke Fobian – RE: Jeans Trend Manager at Woolworths SA.

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  1. Is fashion something that you always aspired to get into?

Yes, I’ve always found myself up to date with current trends from as far back as I can remember. Growing up in a big family of 9, and being one of the youngest, it was inevitable that influences from my older siblings and artistic mother would eventually trickle down my way. Coupled with the fact that I have an incurable sneaker and head gear fetish, my individual visual art style has also been strongly informed by my appreciation of fashion.

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  1. What about Johannesburg inspired your collection?

Because of its sheer size and cultural influence Johannesburg’s ethnic mixture lends itself a lot to the art and design being produced in the city. The cross pollination of cultures results in an energetic, colourful, robust, at times sleek yet raw design aesthetic which is unique to Johannesburg. Since migrating to Johannesburg 9 years ago, the gritty, bold, urban character of the city has permeated (gradually) through most of my work. The city’s cultural diverse melting pot, was also a pivotal influence in the development of my graphic illustrations for the collection.

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  1. What should we expect in your capsule collection?

The range is part of the Re:Denim Artist collaboration which is a series of graphic tees. I was commissioned to develop illustrations which tie in with the urban, street characteristic of the Re:Denim brand to appeal to a broad South African (youth) market. You can expect to see my influences permeating the artworks in the forms of Afrofuturism, Pop art, Street culture, History, Muses, Patterns and text.


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