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Runway Fresh: Maki Oh for Lagos Fashion and Design Week 2015

Fashion

Runway Fresh: Maki Oh for Lagos Fashion and Design Week 2015

Munje Foh

Although Amaka Osakwe, creative director of "Maki Oh," showed her S/S16 pieces in an exclusive release video for Vogue.com, her LFDW15 show was still eagerly anticipated by the crowd.  Known for utilizing local fabric and taking native Nigerian aesthetics to a global stage, Maki Oh has strong supporters at home and abroad.  This year's collection was inspired by the Yoruba custom "Arodan," a practice that parents use to distract pestering children by sending them in search of a thing that does not actually exist.  Though native to Nigerian culture, Arodan is relatable to general philosophical inquiries into the absurdity of life and the planned undertakings of humans which often render results other than our intended outcome.  Just as life has a way of putting things together in an manner that is unexpected, Osakwe weaved juxtaposing textures, patterns and fabrics from opposite ends of the global spectrum into an outcome that was still graceful in the end.  All in all this collection is no deviation from Osawke's industry standard of finding a way introduce her unique culture and experience in a way that resonates with the world.  In explaining the symbolism behind the current collection, Maya Singer, writer for Vogue commented, "Osakwe is a designer with an urgent need for her clothes to mean something."  Respectfully, I disagree.  Osakwe is an African artist, she belongs to a cohort that has always used their talent to comment on social, political or cultural occurrences.  There is no separation of art and meaning in Africa.  It is a tool to be used by anyone whose hands are gifted, and Osakwe has proven that she is among the blessed.  Here are a few of my favorite pieces from the Maki Oh S/S16 collection below:   

 

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Pictures courtesy of lagosfashionanddesignweek.com, see full collection here