2015, My Beautiful Home competition awards outstanding homes

September 2015

We are happy to share with you the Outcome of the 2015 My Beautiful Home Competition held on Friday 11 September 2015 at Amagugu International Heritage Center, 60 km along the Bulawayo Kezi Road.

And now for the moment you’ve all been waiting for…the winners of My Beautiful Home, 2015!
When My Beautiful Home was held for the first time last year, there were merit awards and certificates of participation for every participant, but only seven positions altogether which attracted prizes. This year, through the explosion of entries – from 30 last year to close to 300 this year – as well as the incredible generosity of local companies in sponsoring prizes, we have been able to increase last year’s number 10 fold…to 77 prize winners! And, believe it or not, we still struggled to award places to all the deserving entries.The prize winners were broken down into Honorable Mentions, Merit Awards, which translated into the top 10 runners up in each ward, and then prizes for being the second runner up and the best runner up in each ward. From there the MBH committee further extended the number of award-winning categories from last year to The Best Exterior, The Best Interior and the Best Overall Homestead…as well as awarding a special prize for innovation and, through the initiative of photographer, Andre van Rooyen, two “Photographer’s Choice” awards to encourage artistry among the participants.
The variety of design styles chosen in THE BEST EXTERIOR category demonstrated the diversity of the art rendered as well as the varied tastes of the judges. Winner of this year’s Gold Indlu, or Best Exterior, was Thulisa Ndlovu with her bold brick and chevron designs in black, brown and white. The same consistent design covered each hut and there was a clear understanding of space and form, not only in the design but in the placement of the huts within the compound; the Silver went to Queen Ncube with her exuberant floral design, noteworthy for the masses of colour and the almost 3-D effect of the petals, each delicately and individually painted; and the bronze was awarded to Sithembiso Sibanda whose elegantly curving front verandah, together with the walls of her hut, were decorated with stylised floral designs.

MBH 2015 Winner 2

In some cases the judges would come across a homestead in which one hut stood out from the rest. In other cases where only one hut was decorated at all or where a traditional hut stood alongside square cement and asbestos structures. These homesteads were still considered for the Best Exterior Prize, however the BEST OVERALL HOMESTEAD had to be something a little more. Here the judges were looking for consistency throughout the compound, in terms of design, tidiness, innovation, structure and form. In essence the winner of this prize had to tick all the boxes. And the winner of the prestigious Gold Ekhaya this year was Doreen Nyathi whose entire compound was elegantly decorated in stylised floral designs, followed by last year’s winner, Sikhanyiso Ngwenya, whose delicately rendered figurines and their thoughtful placement on the walls of her home never fail to amaze us and the bronze was shared by Zodwa Nyathi and Kim Nyathi, two highly gifted artists with very different styles.

MBH Winner 1

What stunned and impressed the judges the most was the standard of the interiors, both in last year’s My Beautiful Home and once again this year, making the selection of a winner extremely difficult. Great efforts had been taken not only in creating an indoor space that was practical and efficient, but also aesthetically pleasing.

MBH 2015 exterior
In the category of THE BEST INTERIOR, or “Iziko”, this year, the Gold went to Sithembiso Sibanda, visited on the last day after which the judges had seen many extremely beautiful interiors…and were still blown away by hers. Her interior stood out from the rest largely because she had chosen black as her background, making the stylized black and brown designs pop right out of the walls; the Silver Iziko was awarded to Sichelelise Mkandla whose massive kitchen with bold black and red fittings greatly impressed the judges; and the third prize, or Bronze Iziko, went to Sitshengesiwe Ngwenya, last year’s winner of the Gold for the Best Interior; Sitshengesiwe still has the power to impress us and this year she had added an innovative sink to her kitchen, along with the clay oven which had won her top marks in last year’s competition. The sink has an outlet pipe which leads to a little vegetable garden outside.

MBH interior 3 MBH 2015 interior 2 MBH 2015 interior 1

Phathisa Nyathi explain the My Beautiful Home in a radio interview 2014 soon after the launch.MBH 2015 interior 1 Below is an interview that explains the project, done by Phatisa Nyathi at the Launch of the 2014 competition.


You can follow the project and the team behind this wonderful work on Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/MyBeautifulHut  images by Andre Van Rooyen