African creative culture

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The new guard of designers from the African diaspora mixes in an ultra contemporary way references to its roots, crafts and traditional designs with avant-garde, street-wear or sartorial codes. Here are some of our favorites !

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– From February 26th to March 26th 2016, the Parisian concept store Merci highlights African origin designer labels re-visiting the tradition in a contemporary way. 

– The ‘Social Fabric’ exhibition in London’s William Morris Gallery explores how the printed and factory-woven textiles of eastern and southern Africa mirror the changing times, fashions and tastes of the region. The exhibition reveals how these fabrics express the social, political, religious, emotional concerns of the people who wear them.

The exhibition also features contemporary art and fashion inspired by the textiles.

Nyorh Agwe was born in Yaoundé, Cameroon and grew up in Italy, Cameroon & the United States. In 2016 she founded her ethical luxury fashion brand. She works in collaboration with Cameroonian artisans.

Orange Culture Nigeria is an androgynous brand created in 2011 by Adebayo Oke-Lawal. He has been a finalist for LVMH Young Fashion Designer Prize, MTN Lagos Fashion and Design Week, and was picked by Vogue and GQ Italia to show his collection at Pitti Uomo in Florence Italy in June 2015.

Maison Château Rouge is a brand created by two Senegalese brothers Youssouf and Mamadou Fofana. They mix African and European culture by combining sports jerseys volumes to traditional wax prints. The collections are made in Paris, in the Château Rouge neighborhood.

– Reuben Reuel created his brand Demestiks which is made in New York since 2012 to offer new classics. He uses wax patterns on vintage-inspired lines.

– Through the lens of Ed Singleton“Africa Rising” editorial on Models.com showcases a selection of designer pieces presented at Lagos Fashion & Design Week.

Tops : Bridget Awosika

Pants : RÉ Lagos

Pants : Orange Culture Nigeria

Shoes : Loza Maléombho

Loza Maléombho merges traditional cultures/subcultures with contemporary fashion, for an avant-garde aesthetics. By producing in Ivory Coast, she works with local artisans, and also helps women of a small manufacturing workshop hiring young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

– The Nigerian label Grey created in 2010 by Rukky Ladoja offers affordable multi-cultural creations of quality.

– Italian designer Stella Jean’s sense of style reflects her métissage and Creole heritage. Her silhouettes reflects multiculturalism applied to fashion, and expressed via the Italian tailoring.

Stella Jean collaborates with African and Haitian artisans, respecting the territories, resources and traditions of local communities, while preserving their ancestral know-how. 

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Avec Ces Frères is a brand part of creative collective Art Comes First. It is the vision result of duet Sam Lambert (he was born in Angola. His father, who was tailor, transmitted him the love of cuts & fabrics, then he then learned the techniques in Savile Row) & Shaka Maidoh. They share the same passion for vintage, crafts, and considering both clothing as a mode of artistic expression, as well as photography, painting, performance…

Orange Culture Nigeria is an androgynous brand created in 2011 by Adebayo Oke-Lawal. He has been a finalist for LVMH Young Fashion Designer Prize, MTN Lagos Fashion and Design Week; and was picked by Vogue and GQ Italia to show his collection at Pitti Uomo in Florence Italy in June, 2015.

– Italian designer Stella Jean’s sense of style reflects her métissage and Creole heritage. Her silhouettes reflect multiculturalism applied to fashion, and expressed via the Italian tailoring.

Stella Jean collaborates with African and Haitian artisans, respecting the territories, resources and traditions of local communities, while preserving their ancestral know-how.

– Founded in 2010, Daily Paper is a men streetwear label created by an Amsterdam based collective. Inspired by their African heritage and passion for contemporary fashion, the brand focuses on quality and fine detail.

Dent De Man is named after an Ivory Coast mountain, and is established in 2013 in an East London multi-cultural hub. It owes its identity to the Britanico-Ivorian roots of its founder, who mixes sartorial codes to premium traditional batik impressions from Dutch manufacturer Vlisco.

Atelier Beaurepaire duet fuses African inspirations to modern Western cuts. They get their inspiration from travels, music… The products are made in Morocco, and much attention is paid to details and finishings, while remaining accessible to young customers. 

To discover more young African designers, check Oxosi website.

DARK JUNGLE

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Inspired by the Caribbean theme of our recent SS17 trend book, welcome to a nocturnal and exotic atmosphere.

Henri Rousseau’s paintings ‘La charmeuse de serpents’ and ‘Le rêve’ plunge the spectator into a dream-like and mysterious luxuriance. Paris’ Musée d’Orsay presents this singular painter’s modern vision until July 17th.
Accompanying the release of the new Jungle Book movie, Kenzo and Disney created a capsule collection launched at the beginning of April. Its surprisingly dark lookbook adds depth to this tropical limited series for men and women.
Giant palm leaves find refreshing humility in many artists’ works, such as Kleber Matheus’s neon lights starkly reflecting on dark plants.

Luxuriance and the intimacy of twilight look good together.

 

Ceramix

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The Cité de la Céramique in Sèvres and La Maison Rouge in Paris present Ceramix :  an exciting exhibition of ceramic pieces made by artists only – and not designers, which means that they are no usual goods. What was regarded as crafts for a long time became a real playground for art. While La Maison Rouge focuses more on contemporary explorations, Sèvres confronts them to the pioneers’ stunning creations. From Gauguin to facetious Elsa Sahal or Jessica Harrison , including the revolution of japanese group Sodeisha, the journey shows how ceramics has been going with the issues of their time. The renewed interest for this material may find an explanation in the urge of taking up with Mother Earth again. Considering the quality and the vitality of contemporary creation, this is good news !

Cité de la Céramique, 2 place de la Manufacture, 92310 Sèvres
La Maison Rouge, 10 boulevard de la Bastille, 75011 Paris
& we love also… Gabrielle Wambaugh at Galerie Eric Dupont, 138 rue du Temple, 75003 Paris
Cécile Noguès at Galerie Alain Gutharc, 7 rue Saint-Claude, 75003 Paris

 

 

 

Noémie Goudal at Le Bal

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Le Bal presents the first monographic exhibition in France devoted to Noémie Goudal. In front of her photographs, snatched by the beauty of these strange visions, the watcher hesitates a little bit : dream or réality ? And then a detail, a cable, an imperfection catches eye … The artist builds handmade paper structures which, by the magic of photographic surimposition, become cosmic spheres, enigmatic observatories looking as if floating on water, magnificent architectures in desert places. Scrutinizing the optical effects doesn’t weaken the hallucinatory strength of these images, where human imagination is at stake.

Noémie Goudal exhibit, 12.02.2016 – 08.05.2016

Le Bal, 6 Impasse de la Défense, 75018 Paris

 

 

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Heterochromia eyes

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Fashion is evolving and models are changing with it. Beauty is now more than ever about uniqueness and being proud of what Mother Nature gave you (or not).

Examples of this include beautiful, charismatic models such as Winnie Harlow and Ralph Souffrant showing off their vitiligo, a skin condition causing loss of pigmentation. Stunning transgender model Hari Nef and androgynous models Vincent Beier & Rain Dove are pushing fashion forward by putting gender ambiguity in the limelight. As for models Kaine Buffonge and Kadri Vahersalu, their heterochromia (eyes of different colors) gives them an incredible and uniquely deep look, adding a mysterious and enigmatic feel to every editorial.