Following an international call for applications, the five winners of AFUP 2023 were unveiled at a launch cocktail party held at Galeries Lafayette Haussmann. These young talents represent various regions of Africa and its diasporas. Their audacious creations as well as their skills seduced a prestigious jury. Next steps: a week of training in Paris, ending with a major fashion show on July 7 at the musée du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac.
On April 28, the members of the jury reviewed each candidate’s file. The selected designers were then presented on Thursday June 1, at Galeries Lafayette Haussmann, at a launch cocktail party attended by Vincent Sénécat, Galeries Lafayette Haussmann store manager, and Her Excellency Madame Anna Bossman, Ambassador of Ghana in France.
Among the partners of this 2023 edition who have joined the committee selecting the laureates are BALENCIAGA and Galeries Lafayette. 35°Nord, Guerlain, France Médias Monde, Brut, Trace and Brune Magazine are also supporting Africa Fashion Up.
From left to right: Thierry Vannier, Director of Customer Development and Operational Marketing, Alix Morabito, Director of Women’s Purchasing and Special Projects, Valérie Ka, co-founder of Share Africa and international model, Her Excellency Madame Anna Bossman, Ambassador of Ghana in France, Touré Bintou, First Counsellor at the Representation of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire to the Organisation de la Francophonie, Vincent Sénécat, Director of the Galeries Lafayette Haussmann store.
The five laureates selected come from the African continent and its diasporas:
● Aristide Loua, Ivorian designer ;
● Shamyra Moodley, South African designer;
● Yonael Marga, Ethiopian designer;
● Jafaru Larry, Ghanaian designer;
● Taju Ibrahim, Nigerian designer.
A week before the show, several leading fashion houses will open their doors to the laureates. They will take part in masterclasses and visit emblematic Parisian haute-couture venues such as the Galeries Lafayette Haussmann department store. In addition, they will receive training in management and international trade from HEC Paris, and will be supported by BALENCIAGA as part of a four-month mentoring program.
They will then have the opportunity to present their pieces to the public in the gardens of the musée du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac on the evening of Friday July 7. This exceptional fashion show, designed by Junior Fritz Jacquet, will alternate fashion and entertainment in the presence of eminent guests.
The announcement of the overall winner, who will be awarded the “Designer Africa Fashion Up 2023” prize, will close this sequence before giving way to a gala dinner.
“As creative leadership is one of Balenciaga’s missions, promoting creativity and supporting talent worldwide is important to us. The partnership with Share Africa – Africa Fashion Up gives Balenciaga the opportunity to accompany designers based in Africa and from the African diaspora in the development of their brand. This commitment illustrates our brand values in enabling diversification and inclusion within the fashion industry and society as a whole” said Cédric Charbit, CEO of BALENCIAGA.
“Africa Fashion Up is at the crossroads of African fashion, and we’re delighted to be able to bring this initiative to as many people as possible this year! The venue chosen for the show symbolizes its openness and originality. We make it a point of honor to increase the visibility of African designers and, thanks to our long-standing partners, to reveal their inventiveness, the quality of their creations and their potential,” emphasized Valérie Ka, the driving force behind Africa Fashion Up.