The De Beers Group Designers Initiative – Shining Light Awards has, since inception attracted great interest from young jewellery designers from Botswana, Namibia and South Africa who have put their best foot forward to enhance their craft in jewellery design. It was first launched in South Africa in 1996 and subsequently in Botswana and Namibia in 2008. Designed to propel the growth of jewellery design in De Beers Group’s producing countries, the initiative was in 2018 extended to Canada and this year alone saw over 100 applicants from these four countries send through their applications for consideration.
The competition has evolved from a gregarious jewellery design competition to one where competitors are now designing commercial collections. In doing so, it has become an essential element of De Beers Group’s beneficiation strategy.
“Adding value to our natural resources, including diamonds, through the design and manufacturing of high-quality jewellery is a logical progression of our strategy” said Peter Moeti – Senior Vice-President De Beers Sightholder Sales South Africa.
“I am particularly pleased that through the participation of Ms. Ursula Pule as a judge, who is one of the members of our enterprise development project for diamond beneficiators, was able to play a role in the process,” he added.
This year’s theme encourages participants to showcase how they celebrate Heroines and Heritage in their respective countries. Fashion and jewellery gurus from Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Italy converged on July over two-days in Gaborone, Botswana, to review designs from talent across all four participating countries.
The panel of judges consisted of International Judge Professor Alba Cappellieri, Professor of Design of Jewellery and Fashion Accessories at the Politecnico di Milano (POLI.design), two judges from South Africa, Mr. Labi Kapo CEO of Akapo Jewels alongside Ms. Ursula Kagiso Pule Creative Director at Nungu Diamonds. Botswana was represented by Mr. Mothusi Lesolle, a renowned Botswana designer, influencer and owner of iZaura fashion-line and Mr Raees Abdoola who is the Managing Director of Azzurro Diamonds, as well as Namibian judges Mr Andreas Herrle co-owner of Herma and Herrle Jewellers.
According to the judges, great talent was displayed through many of the submissions, with some creatively celebrating male figures as their ‘heroines’, based on the impact they have had on society and heritage in general. They highlighted that overall, there was no right or wrong interpretation of the theme, and that jewellery design being an art, provided leeway for its diverse application.
“This judging will see us select one winning design and two runners-up per country, with the final announcement of who the winners are from each country, to be made in November 2019. It was a very intense process that demonstrated how competitive our designers are. Everyone gave it their best and we look forward to announcing who won,” said one of the judges Professor Cappellieri.
The announcement of the winners will be done at the Shining Light Awards Ceremony to be held in Gaborone, Botswana in November 2019.
- 1ST PRICE: 1 YEAR SCHOLARSHIP AT POLI DESIGN POLYTECHNIC IN MILAN ITALY
- 2ND PRICE: 3 MONTHS INTERNSHIP WITH FOREVERMARK IN MILAN ITALY
- 3RD PRIZE: 1 YEAR SCHOLARSHIP WITH AKAPO JEWELLERS IN SOUTH AFRICA