Gen Art, a 20-year-old organization which is known for launching new talent in film, fashion and art, will revive its legacy competition, Gen Art Fresh Faces in Fashion. The event will take place Sept. 9 during New York Fashion Week and has expanded from a single runway show to include a multiseason design incubator.
Keri Ingvarsson, the new co-owner of Gen Art, will produce Fresh Faces 2015, alongside a fashion jury led by fashion consultant/producer and former IMG executive Christina Neault and supported by Betsey Johnson; fashion TV personality and host Robert Verdi; actress, model and lifestyle blogger Lydia Hearst, and Gen Art Fresh Faces designer alumnus Duckie Brown. The last time Gen Art showed in New York was September 2012.
Under new management, Gen Art will offer three finalists opportunities that extend beyond fashion week. In addition to being featured in September’s New York Fashion Week show, the finalists will be mentored and advised by members of the Gen Art fashion jury. Finalists will also gain retail opportunities through Gen Art’s New York and Los Angeles showrooms and at major trade shows, as well as a holiday concept shop with a retail/e-commerce partner that hasn’t been named yet. The 2015 winner — who will be named Sept. 9 — will be awarded a yearlong incubation program to accelerate their career in partnership with Gen Art, including strategy, financial, marketing and sales resources.
Gen Art is seeking nominations through 50 of the world’s leading fashion universities, colleges and educational programs, inviting each institution to nominate their fashion alumni who would benefit most from the new Fresh Faces. “Our goal is to discover that exceptional under-the-radar talent, already making tracks in his or her career,” said Ingvarsson. “We are seeking that compelling, global candidate who will thrive from Gen Art’s ability to fast-track their brand’s development.” She explained that they’re not looking for rookies, but rather “sophomore talent.” Ideally, Gen Art hopes to select two women’s wear designers and one men’s wear designer.
Gen Art launched Fresh Faces in 1995. Among the brands who received that designation were Zac Posen, Rebecca Taylor, Phillip Lim, Duckie Brown and Rodarte.
Gen Art was founded by Ian Gerard and Stefan Gerard and was recently acquired by financial consultant and entrepreneur Andreas Ingvarsson and co-owner Keri Ingvarsson last November. They hired Erica Kraus, former marketing executive at Grey Worldwide, as managing partner to lead the company.