Free workshops on leather creations at COSDEF centre

Sharlien Tjambari

The Goethe-Institut is offering free work-shops at the COSDEF Arts and Craft Centre in Swakopmund on leather creations, these workshops are free of charge to anyone. The workshops started on Thursday morning and will end tomorrow (Saturday).

The workshops focus on the history and significance of leather in a cultural and economic aspect. According to Gianfranco Mostert, the Freelance Project Manager at the Goethe-Institut Namibia many people in the past used leather for survival but never knew the importance of leather. “With this nation-wide workshop we will be having, we plan on empowering the workshop participants with the knowledge on how to use leather, how to explore and be creative. There are different methods of har-vesting and harnessing different kinds of leather into a final product”. He further said that the idea of making money from leather products is growing and the Goethe-Institut Namibia want to host as many work-shops as possible to empower the community”.

The Goethe-Institut Namibia has this year teamed up with the Fashion Council of Namibia and is working together with College of the Arts and COSDEF for Windhoek Fashion Week 2018 to have a “tune-up” through workshops, labs and public talks by persons with experience in the different aspects of fashion. “Everything is FREE and open to anybody in the public interested in developing a skill in fashion. You will see that through some components of the programme we enable the cultural exchange between Germany and Namibia in the interest of developing our nations’ arts and culture”, said Lendl Izaaks the Communications Officer of the Goethe-Institut Namibia.

The Leather Lab at COSDEF Swakopmund will employ a hands-on approach to understanding the material – leather – and developing skills in working with it to produce various items, from belts and handbags to shoes and other fashion accessories. Leather works in Namibia has great potential for the local market to grow and if not expand to exporting final products internationally, so this lab is just the tip of the iceberg.

The Goethe-Institut is the cultural institute of the Federal Republic of Germany and focus on the interest of three things: Language, Culture and Germany.  “We promote knowledge of the German language abroad and foster international cultural cooperation. We convey a comprehensive image of Germany by providing information about cultural, social and political life in our nation. Our cultural and educational programmes encourage inter-cultural dialogue and enable cultural involvement. They strengthen the development of structures in civil society and foster worldwide mobility”, said Izaaks.

Other components of the Fashion Week 2018 Tune-Up will be held in Windhoek at the Goethe-Institut and cover the business aspects of fashion through talks and a Business Model Lab. All of them are free and open to the public. See the link below for more information on the persons presenting these talks as each one was chosen for their experience and knowledge of fashion.


Learning from a master. The Goethe-Institut is offering free workshops at the COS-DEF Arts and Craft Center in Swakopmund on the subject of leather creations. One of Swakopmund’s oldest hands in the leather industry Herbert Schier is seen here parting his knowledge and skill.

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