Home » Future Talks shines with a dynamic line-up of speakers

Future Talks shines with a dynamic line-up of speakers

by Tia

August is swiftly approaching, bringing with it Joburg’s most anticipated talks series, Future Talks, which takes place from August 1 to 4, 2024, at the Sandton Convention Centre. Here, inspiration and innovation will converge, with the Future Talks series set to ignite critical discussions and inspire groundbreaking solutions.

The Future Talks stage will feature a diverse array of industry experts tackling the most critical topics in the design world. This exciting line-up promises to inspire and provoke thought. Bathandwa Ngwendu, the storyteller, director, and host of the Maak ‘n Plan podcast, will MC the talks.

The event brings together a diverse group of speakers, including interior designers, architects, sustainable designers, branding experts, and educators. This diversity ensures that a wide range of perspectives are represented, providing attendees with a holistic view of the design landscape and its future direction.

Renowned international interior designer Tristan du Plessis will kick off the talks programme on Thursday, 1 August. His presentation will set the stage for an exceptional four-day event, promising to be an inspiring and influential gathering for all attendees.

Steve Smith, an experienced media brand editor and writer, will lead an exciting panel discussion on ‘The Business of Sustainability’ – tackling how to incorporate sustainability into standard business processes – as well as a talk delving into what inspires the new generation of designers.

Georgina Smit, green building specialist and Senior Manager at the Green Building Council South Africa, will discuss green building solutions as she highlights various strategies and innovative solutions that can be deployed to achieve net zero carbon, as well as how designers can avoid greenwashing by sharing globally agreed frameworks on circular design and principles.

Exploring how interior design can advance spatial justice and inclusivity in South Africa, interior architect and educator Audrey Nanjala will delve into the intersections of social design and spatial agency. Her talk will highlight how thoughtful design practices can create equitable and inclusive spaces. Attendees will discover key principles, insightful case studies, and the transformative power of interior design in fostering environments that support diverse community needs.

Thapelo Ramahlo and Tshegofatso Choenyane of MaXhosa Africa Lifestyle  will join Ngwendu in a conversation about the brand’s expansion from fashion to lifestyle. They will share experiences, challenges, high points with MaXhosa Africa, along with the vision for the brand’s future, including sustainability efforts.

Andrea Kleinloog, one half of the HesseKleinloog and Anatomy Design team alongside Megan Hesse, will offer an honest insight into working in Africa as both a designer and a woman. In her talk titled “Women in Design: Working in Africa,” Kleinloog will discuss the realities of the design trade and environment. This session is specifically targeted at students in the industry, providing them with a candid understanding of the trade and the environment they will encounter upon graduation.

Pumla Maswanganyi, the founding principal of MM + Co, a design agency dedicated to democratising access to art and design to promote development mandates, will headline a presentation titled ‘African Life-Centric Design: Principles for Moving from Extraction to Regeneration’. This talk will explore the construction of a next-frontier approach to design and creation, with a focus on shaping the continent’s future.

In ‘Designer Futures: Reflecting on the Past, Understanding the Present, and Imagining the Future from a South African Perspective’, the Dean of the Built Environment Faculty at Inscape Education Group, Esther Martins, will emphasise sustainability, cultural integration and technological advancements in shaping our built environment.

Other speakers set to take the stage include Jana Hamman and Koos Groenewald of the in-demand creative branding and design agency Jana + Koos, who also designed the mind-bending 2024 Future Talks visual identity. Joining them are multidisciplinary sustainable designer Matthew Edwards, architect Nerina Naude, Andrew Berry, Director of brand consultancy The Bread, artist and curator Siwa Mgoboza, circular designer Pim Dekkers, and more.

The Future Talks series provide a unique platform for networking with industry peers, experts, and influencers. Attendees will have the opportunity to connect with like-minded professionals, create new partnerships, and exchange ideas that can lead to collaborative projects and career advancement.

The Future Talks are free to attend with general admission tickets to Decorex Joburg, which is collocated within 100% Design Africa. Pre-registration is required as the talks will have limited space so be sure to plan your visit in advance via the dedicated Decorex app which will have all the information you need, as well as live updates. Don’t miss a beat and download the app from the App Store or Google Play to help you design your visitor experience.

For the trade

Members of the trade can pre-register at https://register.decorex.co.za/joburg/delegate/register/default for complimentary trade access. On acceptance of their application, members of the trade will also get the chance to upgrade to the VIP Buyers Club which gives access to exclusive perks like onsite business matchmaking, free parking, VIP lounge access, and priority updates on networking events and workshops.

​​Essential information for Decorex Joburg and 100% Design Africa

Show times:

Thursday 1 August 09h00-18h00

Friday 2 August 09h00-18h00

Saturday 3 August 09h00-18h00

Sunday 4 August 09h00-17h00


Sandton Convention Centre, 161 Maude Street, Sandown, Sandton, 2196, South Africa.


There is ample undercover parking charged at hourly rates and guests are required to use the convenient pay-on-foot parking ticket kiosks. Please consult the list of parking venues listed on the FAQ page: https://www.decorex.co.za/global/en-gb/f-a-q.html


Tickets are available via https://decorex.howler.co.za/events/decorex-joburg-69cb/tickets and cost less if you buy them online ahead of time.

Tickets prices online:

Adults: R150
Pensioners/Students R110
Trade: R140
Children: R30
Children under 2: Free

Ticket prices at the door:

Adults: R160
Pensioners/Students R120
Trade: R150
Children: R30
Children under 2: Free

For more information, visit www.decorex.co.za. For regular updates follow @decorexafrica on Instagram and Facebook, and for the latest decor and design industry news visit the Decorex JRNL https://www.decorex.co.za/global/en-gb/journal.html

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