Naomi Campbell calls out the industry for lack of representation in African fashion.
Arise Fashion Week came to Lagos during Easter Weekend after a five-year break. The prestige African event featured a range of designers from over 45 countries. Supermodel Naomi Campbell’s appearance in three catwalks, including Ozwald Boateng’s show, highlighted how underrepresented African fashion is on the international scale.
The supermodel and contributing editor of British Vogue commented that:
” Africa has never had the opportunity to be out there and their fabrics and their materials and their designs be accepted on the global platform … it shouldn’t be that way”
Despite 2017 being one of the most diverse years in fashion, Arise proved there is still a long way to go. As a continent, Africa lacks an internationally recognised platform. The problem in fashion is that Africa is constantly represented by luxury fashion houses like Stella McCartney, who have defined African fashion as traditional print. This leaves little room for independent designers who have more variety in their fabrics, prints and designs to represent African fashion.
Ultimately, westernised versions of African design should not be what speaks for the continent. As Campbell proposes, like Vogue Arabia, a Vogue Africa will finally give Africans the opportunity to have their own voice in fashion.