UoN post-graduate student wins Bata's global Young Designers Competition - The Sauce
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UoN post-graduate student wins Bata’s global Young Designers Competition

A University of Nairobi (UoN) student was crowned the winner in this year’s Bata Young Designers Challenge in the Czech Republic over the weekend.

Cyprian Kavita Kiswili, who is studying a Master’s Degree in Art and Design, was among the young designers who competed in the Czech Republic at Bata Fashion Weekend 2019, held on Saturday night (13.0.19) at Prague’s historic Zofin Palace.

Kiswili winning shoe nicknamed ‘Blossom’ draws rich inspiration from the cheerfulness, playfulness, and fullness of the bushy Savannah land. The vast, bushy savannah on the edge of Konza town in Machakos was his inspiration for ‘Blossom’, specifically the blossoming flowers, the chirping birds, and the lively people and insects, Nairobi News reported.

Born in Machakos, Kenya, Kiswili works predominantly in the medium of painting and digital illustration and aims to depict beauty and sophistication through a combination of color, texture, and shape. Kiswili was not the only Kenyan who qualified for the finals. Another University of Nairobi (UoN) student, Anita Wambui, was a finalist.

The designers were shortlisted for the competition in Kenya and were required to come up with prototypes of new design shoes from scratch. They were also required to work in one group before they came up with their individual models and working themes.

The winning shoes in the Czech Republic will be put into limited production and sold at select Bata stores globally.

Bata’s most iconic shoes over its 125-year history are also heavily referenced in the competition, most notable of which is the classic North Star. It was the first time that Bata organized a global competition for young shoe designers.

The footwear manufacturer has in the past run a series of ‘Bata Designers Apprentice’, a competition which allows students and emerging designers to showcase novelty in creating new shoe models for the manufacturer. The designers present their concepts and prototype shoes to a Bata panel of judges who grade their work and determine the winner.

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