Fashion Cities Africa
by Rachel Ogbu
Fashion Cities Africa will feature specially commissioned outfits from the plus a series of images that comment on the secondhand clothing industry (known as ‘mitumba’ in Kenya).
Nairobi-based brother and sister duo Velma Rossa and Papa Petit (aka Oliver) are the founders of trendsetting Tumblr 2ManySiblings: ‘a curation space for art & photography’, inspired by the diverse city of Nairobi, a thriving thrift culture and a rich emerging community of young African artists and designers.
Papa Petit and Velma Rossa (2 Many Siblings) bring their fabulous cool style to Brighton to celebrate Fashion Cities Africa. Style, thrift, swap, shop, upcycle, pose, and photograph following 2 Many Siblings’ top tips and inspiration.
Thursday 16 June, 19:00 – 22:00, Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
Thrift Social for Fashion Cities Africa
£10, members £8. Book in advance
The first major UK exhibition dedicated to contemporary African fashion opens at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery in April 2016.
Explore fashion and style in four cities at the compass points of the African continent – Casablanca in Morocco, Lagos in Nigeria, Nairobi in Kenya and Johannesburg in South Africa.
The exhibition focuses on the style choices of individual ‘fashion agents’ from each city from designers and stylists to photographers and bloggers. Museum staff and Africa fashion specialists Hannah Azieb Pool and Helen Jennings visited the cities in summer 2015 (supported in part by the Art Fund through the Jonathan Ruffer Curatorial Grants Programme) to explore their fashion scenes and identify key players.
The exhibition includes a wide range of apparel, from couture to street style – alongside images, film and sound evoking the drama, creativity and dynamism of the four distinctive cities. Highlights include:
- New commissions, including by Nairobi-based brother and sister duo 2Many Siblings (http://2manysiblings.tumblr.com/)
- Controversial high-fashion outfits worn by one of Kenya’s hottest bands, Sauti Sol (MTV Europe’s Best African Act 2014)
- Garments and accessories associated with The Sartists, a Johannesburg-based creative collective documenting their lives and style in post-apartheid South Africa (https://instagram.com/thesartists)
- Exquisite hand-crafted ‘caftan couture’ pieces by Casablanca-based designer Zhor Raïs