21 South African fashion designers:
Amanda Laird Cherry
House of Ole
Erica de Greef, Senior Curator, Zeitz MOCAA
Lesiba Mabitsela, Research Assistant, Zeitz MOCAA
Githan Coopoo, Assistant Curator, Zeitz MOCAA
The concept of 21 YEARS draws in a contemporary millennial attitude of owning and narrating stories located in personal experiences and reflecting individual and unique histories. 21 YEARS offers an approach to reclaiming absent African fashion histories and writing into the record neglected narratives through a series of micro-history exhibitions, workshops and publications that explore, showcase and archive the history of a single event, magazine, maker, retailer, photographer, and more.
The first of these micro-history exhibitions follows the first fashion week launched in Africa, South African Fashion Week (SAFW). 21 YEARS: Making Histories with South African Fashion Week is both a publication of the journey and an exhibition of the work of selected designers who have showcased over the last 21 YEARS with SAFW. Fashion, much like art, reflects broader political, cultural, technological and creative changes, and this survey exhibition offers an opportunity to showcase some of the conceptual developments in post-apartheid South African fashion.
21 YEARS: Making Histories with South African Fashion Week furthermore offers an opportunity to articulate the two pillars of the fashion at Zeitz MOCAA, namely to own and exhibit fashion narratives from the continent and beyond, and secondly to nurture and develop a knowledge hub around African fashion. The exhibition and publication will facilitate a range of important dialogues at Zeitz MOCAA, including critical panel discussions, experimental workshops and digital activations and interventions. In this way, 21 YEARS forms an important foundational stage in the engagement with African fashion at Zeitz MOCAA.
Cover Image Credit:
Designer: Clive Rundle S/S 2010.
Model: Tolulope Arogundade.
Photographer: Ross Garret.