A celebration of the continent’s fashion
Dive into the vibrant world of African fashion at the V&A. Bringing together an eclectic mix of visual arts, music, photography and textiles, this dynamic exhibition explores the creativity and global impact of African fashion – and the iconic visionaries who have shaped the industry, and the continent itself.
The V&A’s sartorial survey begins with a brief history of Africa’s clothing trade, before delving into the evolution of the modern fashion and textile scene. There are traditional kente fabrics and dyed cloths, as well as striking ensembles from African designers that have graced the international stage. Highlights include pieces by Shade Thomas-Fahm, dubbed ‘Nigeria’s first fashion designer’, and a fringed, hot-pink ensemble by Imane Ayissi.
The V&A acquired over 70 new pieces for the exhibition, commissioned new mannequins and even sent a call-out to the public – leading to the inclusion of a number of fascinating, personal photographs. While small in size, the exhibition is ambitious in scope, celebrating icons from the mid-20th century to today. And for those keen to explore more, the Africa Fashion Conference in November will provide space for new ideas on this irrepressibly creative continent.
2 July 2022 - 16 April 2023
Victoria and Albert Museum