Friday, June 19, 2015

Constellation Africa, The Pitti Immagine x Ethical Fashion Initiative

Constellation Africa
The Pitti Immagine x Ethical Fashion Initiative
(photos: ITC Ethical Fashion Initiative)
To confirm the vastness and quality of international participants in Pitti Uomo, over the past few seasons the Fondazione Pitti Discovery has been setting aside a special area for the rising stars on the world’s economic and creative stage with the Guest Nation project. This edition, in cooperation with the ITC ETHICAL FASHION INITIATIVE, a special event focusing on fashion from Africa called “Constellation Africa”, was held to promote young and talented designers from the continent.

Dent de Man, MaXhosa by Laduma, Orange Culture and Projecto Mental had just showcased their Spring/Summer 2016 collections at Dogana in Florence at Pitti Uomo 88.

These were the first menswear brands selected and supported by ITC Ethical Fashion Initiative for its African Designer Programme.

The Ethical Fashion Initiative thanks Pitti Immagine for making the show an immense success highlighting the creative and contemporary fashion culture emanating from the African continent. 

“The Constellation Africa show demonstrated that Africa has its space on the global fashion scene. Africa is present in the imaginary of fashion worldwide and for a long time fashion has sourced inspiration from Africa. But today, this is not what matters: this show presented four collections with international creativity and design. We believe Africa is the land of innovation for human kind.” Simone Cipriani, Head of the Ethical Fashion Initiative.

SS16 Collection and About the designers: 

MaXhosa by Laduma // Laduma Ngxokolo from South Africa 
MaXhosa by Laduma is a South African knitwear brand founded in 2010 by Laduma Ngxokolo. The South African Xhosa manhood initiation ritual practiced by amakrwala was behind the launch of the brand as Laduma sought to create Xhosa-inspired modern knitwear that would be suitable for this tradition. Since, the Xhosa aesthetic has come to be part of the DNA of the knitwear brand as Laduma has explored and reinterpreted traditional Xhosa beadwork, patterns, symbolism and colours to inspire his modern knitwear line. Through his work, Laduma is an agent of change, shifting and evolving with the changing times and further engaging in the dialogue that keeps pushing traditional culture toward the future. 


ORANGE CULTURE // Adebayo Oke-Lawal from Nigeria 
Orange Culture is a contemporary menswear brand created by Nigerian designer Adebyo Oke-Lawal in 2011. The brand combines classic and contemporary western silhouettes with an Afraican edge. Orange Clture fuses Nigerian silhouettes, print fabrics and contemporary urban streetwear. Orange Culture is more than a clothing line, it is a "movement" for a creative class of men that are "self-aware, expressive, exploraive, and art-loving nomads." Orange Culture has been featured by top fashion magazines and was recently shortlisted by Vogue Talents for Africa for LVMH's 2014 Young Fashion Designer Prize.

PROJECTO MENTAL // Tekasala Ma’at Nzinga & Shunnoz Fiel from Angola 
Projecto Mental is an Angolan fashion brand, founded in 2004 by creative duo Shunnoz Fiel & Tekasala Ma’at Nzinga, which fuses fashion and art. The brand was created in the aftermath of the civil war as a platform to help reshape Angola's cultural identity, after the country was ravaged by decades of civil war. Suits with an experimental twist are the signature item of the Projecto Mental brand. Projecto Mental takes an avant-garde approach to tailoring as the designers re-imagine and re-invent the traditional suit for men and women. Strong block colours combined with prints & patterns bring boldness to each design. 

DENT DE MAN // Alexis Temomanin from Ivory Coast & UK 
Dent de Man is a menswear brand created in 2012 by British-Ivorian designer, Alexis Temomanin. Dent de Man’s approach to luxury style is defined by a mix of classic tailoring with colourful patterned fabric. The Dent de Man lifestyle is defined by freedom, quality and “esth├ętisme”, empowering individuals to dress for themselves. Self-expression is core to Dent de Man’s philosophy. The brand prides itself on the use of vintage fabrics and celebration of ancient printing techniques, Dent de Man adapts decadent and bold Java prints forming unique garments that allow individuals to own distinctive and irreplaceable pieces. All Dent de Man fabric is carefully sourced and possesses its own story and meaning.

Do the things you love with passion; Learn from those you admire; Strive to become an expert at what you do xx
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