ones to watch cape town: part two

In the second part of our series on Cape Town’s bright young things, we meet more creatives defining the city’s sound, style and vibe.

by i-D Staff
15 June 2016, 12:40am

Lenina Tembisile Parks, 20, artist/model/student

Where's home?
I have lived in Cape Town my entire life, though none of my family is from here. My father's family live in North America and my mother's family are in Limpopo, South Africa.

You're at uni, what are you studying?
Basic Ambulance Assistance, I'll be registered as a paramedic by the end of June.

What are you passionate about?
Emergency health science and intersectional feminism.

Who do you look up to?
Frida Kahlo is my biggest inspiration, though her style doesn't directly influence my art, her life and struggle inspire me. Also Ed Hodgkinson, an artist who has helped me create my own style. And of course, my prep and high school art teachers who gave me the strength, courage and skills I needed to create the art that I do.

Was there a moment for you that changed everything?
I think that my big break was being scouted and signed by 20 Model Management. Having suffered from self-harm for years, becoming a model, despite my scars, is proof that our pasts don't have to define us in the present or future.

What are you excited about?
Continuing my studies and working alongside people who have the same passion for our communities as I do.

What's the best advice you ever received?
What people say about you and how they treat you isn't a reflection of you, it's a reflection of them. That saying helps me remember that the negativity that comes from others is not something I always deserve and does not reflect my goodness.

What do you wish someone told you sooner?
I wish that when I was a child someone had taken the issues I suffered around my sexuality and mental health seriously instead of being brushed off as a "phase."


Ulfah Davids, 24, designer and pattern maker

What are you passionate about?
Creating women's streetwear that will stand the test of time.

When did everything change for you?
It would have to be my feature on Between10 and 5 which showcased my graduate collection. As well as designing TwoBop's first women's capsule, it was just after I graduated in April 2016.

Who are you tipping in 2016?
Myself! I'm networking like crazy and gaining a shit-load of experience in the industry.

What are you looking forward to?
I'm looking forward to dropping my women's collection for AW 16/17 in July as well as being a part of TwoBop and showcasing their SS 16/17 collection at South African Men's Fashion Week.

Where do you take people when they come to Cape Town?
Probably Spur steak ranches.

Like the family restaurants?
Yeah, but on the creative side I'd take them to First Thursdays to see some local art and Cape Town's vibe.

What don't people realise about Cape Town?
That we have everything! Mountains, sea, forests, the art scene is thriving at the moment. Great food and four seasons in one day.

What was the best advice you were ever given?
To be patient. Everything will fall into place at the right time, hard work really pays off.

What do you wish you were told?
To stay humble throughout everything and that networking is key in this industry — you gotta suck some people's ass with a smile.


Tameez Vayej, 26, creative director 

Tell us about a piece of media that is really special to you.
The book that changed my life was The Game Of Life and How to Play It. One of the great films that showed me inspiration was The Pursuit of Happyness.

What are you excited about?
I'm looking forward to our next Blanc fashion show in July and shooting our first campaign thereafter.

Tell us something we don't know about Cape Town.
Cape Town has a cannon that goes off every day at noon.

What's a song you can't stop listening to?
The remix of Golden by Kaytranadas.

What was the best advice you ever got?
Never count your chickens before they hatch.

What do you wish you'd been told?
The great things take time.


Anees Petersen, 28, designer

What do you do?
I'm the creative director of a clothing brand called Young and Lazy. I also share a retail space with two other brands called Corner Store and assist a few stylists from Cape Town.

What influences you?
I would have to say music, encounters with various people and then obviously other designers that I look up to like Yohji Yamamoto, John Galliano and Junya Watanabe.

What are you passionate about?
The construction of a garment and level of quality. More recently I've also become interested in fabrication and exploring different textiles.

Tell us about your big break.
Once Virgil Abloh asked someone what t-shirt they were wearing — it was Young and Lazy! Nothing came from it but to me it was my own personal breakthrough.

What are you looking forward to?
Travelling more and taking the brand international.

Tell us something people don't know about Cape Town.
It is an amazing place to come and visit and experience but when you live here and work in certain industries in can feel super small and claustrophobic.

Best advice you were ever given?
To trust myself and just do what I feel is right.

Advice you wish you were given?
I wish someone told me that it was never too early to start doing grown things because I really missed that boat!


Check out part one to meet more Cape Town legends.


Photography Russell Kleyn

South Africa
Cape Town
Anees Petersen
lenina tembisile parks
tameez vayej
ulfah davids