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Top African designers to hit NYFW
04
Feb '10
Leading global African-themed style and cultural magazine ARISE selected top African designers Black Coffee, Loin Cloth and Ashes along with Deola Sagoe to showcase Fall/Winter 2010 designs during the publication's AFRICAN COLLECTIVE PART III Mercedes Benz Fashion Week runway presentation.

On Saturday, February 13th at 8 p.m., show producer Jan Malan will transform Bryant Park's largest venue, The Tent, into a living African landscape with elaborate staging inspired by award-winning poet Ben Okri. Models will walk through a virtual day and night on the great continent flush with excitement as South Africa gears up to host the FIFA World Cup and many states celebrate a half century of independence as well as economies poised for rapid growth.

The AFRICAN COLLECTIVE PART III, along with a series of international ARISE-branded events, will act as a unique and valuable platform for the great scope of talent ARISE Magazine documents monthly. Chairman and CEO Nduka Obaigbena of Leaders & Co., parent company to this London-based publication and Nigeria's best-selling newspaper THISDAY, believes the event will create and promote positive images to its readership residing throughout the world and even encourage investment in African nations.

“Our tomorrow is bright,” said Obaigbena, “Showing for the third consecutive season at Bryant Park and in a larger venue is a testament to the continued success of our initiatives. I look forward to what is sure to be an amazing usage of African visual aesthetics recreated on the catwalk.”

Fresh from Berlin Fashion Week and receiving the Mercedes Benz South Africa Best Fashion Award 2009, Black Coffee designers Jacques van der Watt and Danica Lepen are new to a US audience. “It's a great experience for us and a little bit of a treat in a business that is a great deal of hard work,” said van der Watt.

Lagos-based Deola Sagoe will be returning to New York Fashion Week after a decade. “To have come this far ordains a measure of success that I could not have imagined for myself. I am thrilled and honoured to be showing in New York.”

For the first time, an emerging designer, Loin Cloth and Ashes, from Tanzania, will also be part of the collective ensuring a triumvirate of African Design is represented. “My one dream was always to show my work in Africa,” said Anisa Mpungwe. “I would have never for one minute thought that I would ever show overseas, let alone in America, I am grateful to ARISE Magazine for this incredible opportunity.”

In addition to the New York show, ARISE Magazine will present during Paris Fashion Week on March 5, 2010, and host a Fashion Rocks! event in Johannesburg on July, 9, 2010. The highly-anticipated event will feature a fashion show and simultaneous performance by an uber, American songstress.

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