MADE IN AFRICA S/S 2020, CLOTHES, CULTURE, CONNECTION AFRICAN FUSION FASHION BOWS AT NYFW
For the first time, during NYFW, MADE IN AFRICA 2020, will present premiere runway presentations from two, contemporary African designers, at Pier 59 Studios. Each grouping spotlights the African connection between clothing, culture, tradition, aesthetics, et al, as a means of both beautification and body adornment. Described as the “embodiment of creativity and expression with deeper cultural & spiritual meaning, designs reflect the artisanal artistry gleaned from deep African ancestral spiritual roots.”
“Truly great artistry is not achieved through knowledge or mastery alone, but, by divine inspiration from those who have come before. Their spirit lives through the hands, lives and souls of our modern African ateliers”, Creative Director, Paul Leisegang
For Laduma Ngxokolo, founder/designer, MAXHOSA AFRICA, the SiziiKumnkani NeeKumnkanikazi (“We Are Kings and Queens”) grouping, portrays the regal majesty of Africans and Africa; ‘The Cradle of Mankind’. “My collection showcases the cultural roots and traditions of Africa. My desire is to have my work restore dignity to the continent, so that each garment may reflect a modern, current aesthetic, yet, with an ancient philosophy behind my brand, set in our rich African heritage with its observance of ceremony.”
“Basking in the Osun River”, Eliana Murargy’s muse experiences a re-birth in the sweet waters of West Africa, channeling her protective deity, paying homage to the Aje, honoring the woman who yields cosmic powers and her force of creation and sustainer of life. Celebrating the timeless signature of the studio, in tandem with the gentle nature of female embodiment, healing, empowerment, the delicate, day to evening collection balances fine tailoring and refined fit via flowing shapes, detailed silhouettes; soft shadings of rosé, beige, wide array of blues, vivid sparkles, delicate silks, touches of silvery textures; pink accents in tandem with stark white and black.
Leisegang notes: “MADE IN AFRICA is an invitation to sense and experience the culturally appropriate, magical experience of African fashion; the spirit, craft, history and ceremony of these pieces, which have been passed along through the generations. We want everyone to experience how each designer blends modern African fashion and new technologies with ancient cultural tradition across the collections shown on the runway.
For Producer, Jan Malan, “the glorious, complex, wonderful body is exceptionally adaptable, inherently portable, and simultaneously personal and public. We are using the body as the mobile vehicle; unique canvas, on which to project forms that pass between cultures and communities.”
Launching her studio in 2011, the designer presents a global, lifestyle brand embracing strong African roots. With deep devotion to her country’s artisan craft, Murargy’s luxurious pieces target the strong, modern woman who exudes an unforgettable sense of natural beauty from deep within. The grouping embraces local inspiration, mixed with a globally relevant aura; intricate styling and high fashion continually push and challenge the boundaries of style within the African context. Working with an exclusive group of West African tailors, hand-crafted, beautifully rendered silhouettes reveal impeccable finishing and details, serving an uncompromising, contemporary notion of what feminine beauty signifies for muses of all backgrounds and faces.
Created by Laduma Ngxokolo, recipient of 2018’s Best Designer in Africa Award; New African Magazine’s 100 Most Influential Africans of 2017,wraps a strong signature aesthetic around a global, luxury, fashion/lifestyle brand - including a piece within IKEA’s by invite only, African designer, "ÖVERALLT" grouping collection - all resonating over cultural boundaries in forging and creating a new fashion, design landscape across Africa. Exceptional craftsmanship and haute couture designs capture the hearts of South Africans via strong cultural links to Laduma’s personal heritage. As a descendent of the Mpondo clan, growing up in the Eastern Cape, Port Elizabeth, he drew inspiration from traditions and arts of his native culture, expanding his creative repertoire and re-imagining these cultural design elements as high fashion statements. Honing his craft, he earned a Master’s Degree in Material Futures from the University of the Arts London: Central Martins School, and a B Tech (Textile Design & Technology) Cum Laude from Nelson Mandela University, Today, at the helm of his worldwide business, Laduma has been honored by numerous awards, accolades (celebs, such as Beyonce, Bill Gates have cited Laduma as an outstanding African designer; in 2017, he received the inaugural, Vogue Italia Scouting For Africa prize, to present his collections at the Palazzo Morando Show); his work has been showcased at The Museum of Modern Art; Fashion Week Runway Presentations at Cape Town, Rwanda, Barcelona; The British Museum; Pitti Uomo International Fair/Chivas Regal Forum Presentation.