'Mswenko' is a Zulu expression that implies confidence, vibrance, uniqueness and stylish flair.

VW and its creative agency partner Ogilvy invited Mzansi to join the '#MswenkoChallenge', which aims to showcase the duo's interpretation of local flavour and umswenko.

The duo adds that local aspiring artists participated and that they had over 300 entries from Mzansi. The campaign unearthed a new community of creatives and fans.

Three overall winners were selected from the 15 finalists of the '#MswenkoChallenge'. Each walked away with:
  • Superbalist vouchers
  • a limited-edition print by Yay Abe
  • merchandise by GALXBOY, and
  • the opportunity to have their artistic work showcased on the Volkswagen platforms.
Camilla Clerke, executive creative director at Ogilvy Cape Town, says, "Ogilvy is honoured to have been involved in a campaign of this nature, which gives a platform to local talent, to showcase and amplify their work."

"Social media was a major driver for the campaign. The feedback that the '#MswenkoChallenge' has received has been positive and truly rewarding. Looking through the entries was a 'wow' moment, as we recognised the degree of talent we have in the country," adds Clerke. 

"It's rare that aspiring South African artists are recognised by global, highly admired brands. The campaign was one-of-a-kind for Ogilvy, and our client partner Volkswagen South Africa," says Clerke. 

First-place winner Best J Ncube stood out amongst the entries, according to the duo. 

Ncube and Yay Abe were partnered with The Pro Shop to bring to life their designs in the form of a limited-edition, locally made streetwear range. This was made available to the public for purchase from Tuesday, 3 August exclusively through VW's online lifestyle store.

Meredith Kelly, head of marketing at Volkswagen South Africa says, "Volkswagen has always been committed to moving people forward on the road and in their ambitions. Under this philosophy, VWSA has remained passionate about supporting local talent, individuals and businesses under our 'Drive Local' ambitions and campaigns."

"It only felt natural and imperative to celebrate our locally produced limited-edition Polo Vivo Mswenko by supporting local talent once more on a mission to Drive Local creativity forward," adds Kelly.

"We were inspired by the many talented submissions to our Polo Vivo '#MwenkoChallenge' and are honoured to share our platforms with our top artist, as an opportunity to showcase his designs, because we understand the power of exposure for young local artists," Kelly says.

'#MswenkoChallenge' winner Best J Ncube says, "I would have never thought that a guy like me from Pretoria would be working with someone like Yay Abe and with a big brand like Volkswagen on such an amazing project like this."

"Volkswagen has truly made my dream come true; this opportunity will not only assist me with local and possible international exposure but with the confidence to pursue my dreams further," concludes Ncube.

For more information, visit www.shopvwlifestyle.co.za.