The International Fashion Showcase (IFS) is back, inviting 16 of the best emerging designers from across the globe to question, provoke, and explore their worlds through fashion.
A highlight of the fashion calendar, the IFS nurtures and presents work from the most exciting fashion talent from around the world. Working in partnership over a year, British Council, British Fashion Council, London College of Fashion and Somerset House provide a tailored residency programme for 16 emerging international designers, culminating with a free public exhibition during London Fashion Week, 11-25 February 2019 at Somerset House. Themed around the concept of ‘Brave New Worlds’ and the changing landscape of fashion, the exhibition showcases the work developed by the designers in a compelling series of installations exploring urgent issues and new ideas that are shaping fashion globally.
Having blown both audiences and judges away with our award-winning installation Blueprint Beirut in 2016, we’re delighted to once again be partnering with Beirut’s STARCH Foundation on the 2019 edition of the IFS to support designers from the Arab world at this landmark event, this time showcasing emerging Lebanese designer Roni Helou.
Ready-to-wear designer Roni Helou – the sole designer representing the Arab world in the IFS – was born in 1992 and is a graduate of Creative Space Beirut, an innovative NGO providing free education in fashion design. During his three years in the institution, he took part in various exhibitions, internships and collaborations. His brand has been featured in prominent regional media outlets such as Vogue Arabia, Harper’s Bazaar Arabia and the National UAE and is sold at various boutiques in the region.
A committed campaigner for environmental and animal rights, Roni’s activism has heavily influenced his brand. This is evident in its championing of sustainability, local action and fair practices. Fittingly, his IFS showcase installation ‘Wasteland, Wonderland’ seeks to explore attitudes and behaviours concerning recycling, waste and the garbage crisis that has plagued Lebanon.
Roni Helou’s collection confronts the phenomena of how local geographies in the developing world are shifting as a result of the endless accumulation of landfill rubbish. The sheer amount of waste presents a problem that seems exceedingly difficult to tackle, shrouding the future in darkness. Made primarily from recycled materials, the installation is split into two parts; dark and light. The dark side signifies how garbage, literal and political, is engulfing Lebanon, while the bright side sheds light on the situation, offering information and possible solutions.
The International Fashion Showcase will be open daily at Somerset House from 10m-6pm. Access is free.