The sixth Durban University of Technology Arts and Design Digital Festival (DUTDigifest) with attendees led by the Executive Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Design (FoAD) paying their respects to the victims of gender-based violence that has sent shockwaves throughout the country recently.
Addressing the attendees which included DUT students, staff members and technology and arts practitioners, Dr Smith explained that this year’s DUTDigifest, themed Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) was aimed at presenting a wide range of inspirational, engaging and educational activities across a number of creative mediums integrated with technology.
She also expressed her excitement over the festival celebrating six years since it was launched in 2014. She also recognised that there was still a lot that had to be done to integrate the arts and technology. “We have to move forward by ensuring that the work of our students truly integrates technology.”
Over the years the festival has featured a series of live art activations, exhibitions, innovations, panel discussions, workshops, music, theatre, poetry, comedy, dance, food and more.
This year’s DUTDigifest was focussed on workshop activities for students which included an animation workshop facilitated by TriggerFish Animation Studio and a coding workshop assisted by DUT student, Gomolemo Mohapi.
Talkfest which took place on last Friday, 13 September 2019, featured a presentation titled: Creating Art by Fak’ugesi Artists in Residence, Natalie Paneng and Nhlakanipho Mashinini; 4IR and the Job Market presented by DUT Information Technology Department’s Ebrahim Asmal, Dianne Makings from the Cape Town International Animation Festival and Victoria Jackson from Naspers Lab. Google South Africa’s Head of Communications and Public Affairs Mich Atagana, Karabo Ngaepe from the Sunday Independent, Dr Sheperd Mpofu from the University of Limpopo and DUT Journalism’s Tony Manyadadze were part of the Media Ethics in the Digital Era seminar. Another seminar titled: How can the arts benefit from 4IR was headlined by artist, Bongani Njalo, DUT Journalism graduate and entrepreneur Amanda Mathe and Juan Steyn from the South African Centre for Digital Language Resources.
Lastly, DUT staff members were panellists at the Technovating Pedagogies Seminar. The staff members were: Fine Art and Jewellery Design’s HoD, Dr Chris De Beer, Dr Carey Burnett from Video Technology, Dan Pienaar from the DUT Engineering Faculty, Journalism’s Maud Blose and FoAD’s Teaching and Learning practitioner, Rosh Sunder.
On Saturday, 14 September 2019 festival goers enjoyed experimenting with robots, virtual reality and 360 degree cameras hosted by DUT’s IT department. Attendees also viewed exhibitions by Fine Art, Graphic Design, Photography, Jewellery Design, to name but a few. The festival culminated at Ritson Campus’ Courtyard Theatre with a stage play by Drama students titled: Cinderella 4.0 and a fashion show by DUT Fashion students.
Pictured: Dr René Smith, Dean of Faculty of Arts and Design giving her opening remarks at the #DUTDigifest6.