You might not think of southern Africa as a hotbed of fashion — it certainly doesn’t crop up when people talk about New York, Paris, London or Milan.
But the Kent State University Museum, attached to its respected fashion department, will be showing the work of contemporary designers from the two southern African nations of South Africa and Namibia in its new exhibit Fashions of Southern Africa. According to curator/KSU associate professor Dr. Sara Hume, the show demonstrates how these emerging and established designers blend cultural influences to create distinctive looks.
“News coverage concerning Africa often focuses on the challenges the continent faces with poverty, disease and war,” says Hume. “Far less attention is paid to the fact that Africa boasts the fastest growing middle class in the world. With this increasing spending power, sectors such as the fashion industry have the potential to see enormous growth in the years to come.”
The show runs for the 2016-2017 school year. Admission to the museum is $5, and this is only one of several exhibits currently on display.