Thebe Magugu, the South African fashion designer who has scored major collaborations with Adidas and AZ Factory, will stage four free fashion shows in the Raphael Court at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum on Oct. 7.
It’s part of the V&A’s Fashion in Motion series, supported by socialite Libbie Scher Mugrabi.
Tickets will be available on the V&A’s website from Sept. 29 at 10 a.m.
The shows will be Magugu’s first catwalk shows outside of Johannesburg, according to the museum, and will present highlights from his spring 2023 collection “Discard Theory.”
Magugu, who took home the LVMH Prize in 2019, visited Dunuza in Johannesburg, a site for secondhand clothes discarded by Europeans and Americans, to gather materials that he later reinterpreted into the 25-look collection.
“For this collection, I thought about national identity politics, and how Western influence has penetrated Indigenous dress,” Magugu said.
“Oftentimes, I see a woman in downtown Johannesburg wearing a shweshwe wrap skirt — a fabric often worn for traditional ceremonies — but paired with a Vodaphone or Manchester United T-shirt. I found that Dunuza acts as a nexus between local and global, throwing everything into a melting pot that produces a post-modern interpretation of what African fashion is,” he added.
Oriole Cullen, senior curator of exhibitions at the V&A, said Magugu’s collections are “beautiful to behold” and “also convey important stories.”
“Magugu deftly manages to both celebrate the possibilities and joy of fashion whilst also causing us, as viewers and consumers, to reflect and question how we can all be better when it comes to our own engagement with fashion and the politics that surround it,” she argued.
The fashion shows will take place during V&A’s major “Africa Fashion” exhibition, which aims to highlight the continent’s global impact and “spark a renegotiation of the geography of fashion,” according to Christine Checinska, the museum’s senior curator of African and African diaspora textiles and fashion.
Besides presenting looks from Magugu’s fall 2021 collection, the exhibition, which runs until April 16, represents 45 designers from more than 20 countries across the continent and highlights other influential contemporary African fashion creatives including Imane Ayissi, Iamisigo, Moshions and Sindiso Khumalo.