Resource of
Open Minds

Design Hub Kampala

Themes: Art practice, Community, Freedom of expression,
Region: East Africa
Country: Uganda

Artistic Expression Lab

DHK wants to strengthen its role as an ecosystem for socio-cultural innovation and safe space for people who think differently by setting up an artistic expression lab and strengthening the online art journal ‘Start Journal’ as communication channel. For the lab they plan on facilitating a quarterly cross-disciplinary creative call for a ground of artists, activists and designers/makers to experiment with different media, technologies and art forms to find solutions for social problems and responses to societal questions. They thereby hope to generate the production of content/work that shows alternative viewpoints on issues effecting society and challenge certain norms. By supporting ‘Start Journal’ they hope to help stimulate high-quality art journalism and independent reporting by art journalists, which DHK believes is key in the development of a critical society. Start Journal was founded by the independent non-profit organization Kampala Arts Trust, formed in 2012, and already plays a huge role in helping creatives link up and explore new forms of expression. DHK and Start Journal will develop a larger communication strategy with the aim of connecting the journal’s content to other media platforms to increase its visibility.

Design Hub Kampala (DHK) is a creative co-working space in Kampala. The renovated warehouse opened its doors in April 2017 to a collaborative work environment for people from a range of disciplines (entrepreneurs, freelancers, designers, writers, product developers, marketing minds, tech start-ups, and makers). DHK’s mission is to show the economic value of creativity and „design thinking‟ and provide an entry point for international market opportunities. In order to create a sustainable foundation for the creative sector, they try to promote the added value of creativity and design for the Ugandan economy, offer an affordable working environment for creative professionals and create a safe haven for free expression and disruptive social change.