The British Council, British Fashion Council and Mercedes-Benz will collectively present work by emerging fashion designers from 26 countries for the International Fashion Showcase 2017 when it returns to Somerset House for a second year in February. Ukrainian Fashion Week and British Council Ukraine will bring seven Ukrainian designers to the IFS.
The exhibition will be the sixth edition of the annual showcase and will form a key part of London Fashion Week’s public-facing program, which celebrates the universal relevance of fashion in contemporary culture. This is the first time the IFS will be supported and presented by Mercedes-Benz, that for the past 21 years has established itself globally as a key player and partner at key international fashion shows and events.
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Between 17 - 21 February 2017 series of installations in the West Wing at Somerset House will explore the theme of Local/Global. Fashion is shaped by its surroundings - the rhythms of nature, climate, cultural memory, social change and historical shifts, reflected in its form, techniques and materials. The peculiarities of the place give a rise to different ways of designing, making and wearing fashion; each has its own unique aesthetic but dialects of a global language. Almost every garment has multiple origins being a product of multiple places and moves through multiple hands. By considering fashion within their own country’s landscape, the countries taking part in IFS will highlight the similarities and differences of our complex and connected world.
Ukraine will be represented by 7 young and talented designers and their new collections. Six designers (FLOW the Label; Jean Gritsfeldt; Alina Zamanova; FROLOV; Yana Chervinska; DZHUS; the COAT by Katya Silchenko) were the winners of the contest that was held during Ukrainian Fashion Week. The judges represented British Council Ukraine, British Fashion Council, Western NIS Enterprise Fund (financial partner of the event) and Ukrainian Fashion Week. Seventh designer to attend IFS, Flow the Label brand and its designer Viktoriya Balanyuk was the winner of the Best Fashion Awards contest and became the winner in the «Discovery of the Year» nomination.
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Like many young fashion designers, Ukraine’s emerging talent has prospered from the global nature of contemporary fashion, where travel and international opportunities open the door to transformative knowledge. In ‘Wish You Were Here’ they find a place to pause, reflect and prepare for the new journeys that emerge from their experiences. A collective image of the fantastical bus stops found across rural Ukraine, which serve as both ad-hoc meeting places and liminal sanctums, ‘Wish You Were Here ’ reminds us that even the most familiar, everyday symbols can be sculpted and graphitized into something distinctly local.
Photo source: UFW PR department, design.britishcouncil.org, UFW web page. All photos belong to their rightful owners.