B&W: Black and White – The Migrant Trend is online

I’m happy to announce that the “B&W: Black and White – The Migrant Trend” platform is online. Visit the page at this link. B&W is the social promotion association co-founded and art directed by Caterina Pecchioli, supporting migrant fashion makers in Italy. Its goal is to consolidate the Italian fashion realities – social cooperatives, companies and fashion projects – launched, or involving asylum seekers, refugees, …

Conference presentation on African designers in Italy

On 8 May, I presented the ongoing research on African designers in Italy that I am conducting with Caterina Pecchioli of “B&W: Black and White – The Migrant Trend”. The presentation, that we entitled “Designing Identity: A Visual Proposition to examine migrant and second-generation fashion in Italy” can be viewed at this link, starting at 4:26:22.

I interviewed Catherine McKinley, author of The African Lookbook

The African Lookbook is the new Bloomsbury publication gathering 130 photographs of stylish women taken between 1870 and 1970. The photographs belong to Catherine McKinley’s large collection of vernacular and studio shots from over 40 African countries and spanning the early colonial decades through the present. I had the pleasure to interview Catherine on the book, which is the first …

Asmaa Jama’s “Before we disappear” archives the realities of (in)visibility

Upon clicking “Enter,” Before We Disappear opens to a low-angle shot of a house surrounded by dense vegetation, seemingly immune to the vivid jabber and birdsong on the sound track. The camera pans over the encroaching shrubbery and the carvings on the outer walls instead, barely registering the human figure in a cream-coloured headscarf behind a screen of leaves and …

The Ancestral is Modern in Banyoloyi A Bosigo: my new guest post for Griot Mag is online

I wrote a second guest post for Griot Magazine on Kristin-Lee Moolman’s “Banyoloyi a Bosigo”, the new fashion film she wrote and directed for Thebe Magugu that was presented virtually at Paris Fashion Week early this month. The collection showcased in this work explores the revival of indigenous spirituality in South Africa and features several references to sacred rituals. Like …

Black Lives Matter in Italian Fashion

Last year, designers Stella Jean (of the eponymous brand) and Edward Buchanan (Sansovino 6) with Michelle Ngonmo, talent scout and founder of Afro Fashion Week Milano, started the collective “Black Lives Matter in Italian Fashion” to raise awareness on systemic racism in the industry. Their first intervention took place on the final day of Milano Fashion Week, in September 2020, …

Sustainability files – Managing fashion waste in Ghana

Obroni Wawu is the Akan expression for used clothes in Ghana. It translates to “the white man has died clothes”: a reference to Western material abundance. “Dead White Man’s Clothes” is also the name of the multimedia research project on the secondhand clothing trade that Americans Liz Ricketts and Branson Skinner begun in 2016 to investigate the impact of fast …

Victor Abbey-Hart on cultural misappropriation and integration in Italian fashion

Victor Reginald Bob Abbey-Hart is a designer and sculptor from Ghana’s coastal town of Saltpond. He officially launched Gavachy, a ready-to-wear brand of luxury “Neo-African” styles, in 2015 and has since showed several times in Ghana, Nigeria, and Togo, before relocating to Europe. Ghanaian aesthetic, particularly traditional textile designs and architecture, inspire his work. For “Occularcentrism”, his SS2018 collection, Victor …

“Decolonising fashion” can reproduce inequality – a compelling reflection by Beatrace Angut Oola

Cornelia Lund*’s interview with Beatrace Angut Oola has just appeared in the journal Fashion Theory. Oola, who is based in Hamburg, has created and curated important Afrocentric fashion and beauty projects launched in Germany in recent years. In 2012, Oola founded the media brand Fashion Africa Now (formerly Africa Fashion Day Berlin), a digital platform and networking site that showcases and connects talents …