Tapiwa Matsinde

author | curator | mentor

I am Tapiwa a multi-passionate author, storyteller, curator, mentor, and craft and design lover. I specialise in global craftsmanship and design with particular knowledge of makers from Africa.

Having spent 20 years working as a brand guardian and graphic designer for some of the world’s most prestigious luxury and blue-chip brands I now craft and curate a diverse range of experiences centred around storytelling. Celebrating excellence and creativity in craftsmanship by going behind the scenes to tell the stories of artisans, makers, designers, and their work.

Creatively and culturally curious by nature, I am on a mission to shine a light on those designers, makers, and artisans underrepresented in the creative industries, to share their stories, and help them tell their own. My award-winning platform atelier 55 is where it all began. Shining the spotlight on contemporary craftsmanship and design from and inspired by Africa. What started as a blog has evolved into an invaluable industry resource. And my interest in fine craftsmanship, a fascination with what the human hand can create, and the reasons craftspeople work with the crafts they do have blossomed into a wider knowledge of global crafts.

Passionate about writing I am the author of several design and entrepreneurship books including Contemporary Design Africa, the first art book to showcase and survey a generation of innovative designers and artisans from across the African continent and beyond who are putting the diverse expressions of African design on the world’s stage.

Tapping into my graphic designer background and a stint as a maker myself as a jewellery designer, I now guide budding and established makers, artisans, and designers through the journey of defining their purpose. Helping them to develop and grow international standard high-end fine craft & design brands that command attention and resonate with their unique blend of creativity, heart, soul, and service. I have also served as a mentor on the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women programme.

I call the cosmopolitan city of London, in the UK, home.

“Celebrating excellence and creativity in fine craftsmanship by going behind the scenes to tell the stories of artisans, makers, designers, and their work.”

Tapiwa Matsinde
My story

“You give us designers’ platforms and opportunities to grow and share our brand with new cultures that otherwise would not have the chance to see our work.”

Dounia Tamri-Loeper
Founder Dounia Home, USA / Morocco