For their eighth project, Adeju Thompson looks to use their brand Lagos Space Programme to comment on “Cloth as a Queer Archive.” In doing so, Thompson examines how clothes are used by people beyond their inherent desire: a piece of clothing is decorative, but also protective, explanatory, inclusive, and definitive of oneself and our identities.
“In addition to exploring queer semiotics,” Thompson explains. “The collection is also a study of minimalism from an African point of view. In the popular imagination, the African aesthetic is colorful, robust, and sometimes dynamic, in contrast to a ‘cleaner,’ pared-down European style,” they add.
Thompson takes these ideas and combines them with a study on Yoruba, a group of West African people who mainly inhabit parts of Nigeria, Benin, and Togo who are renowned for their skills in craft. Aptly, Lagos Space Programme calls upon the textiles and adornments found within Yoruba culture, while also looking at how Queer people adopt and adapt these very qualities.
With this, Thompson applies the traditional resist-dye technique, Adire, to emulate the indigo-dyed clothing made by Yoruba’s people. Per the brand, “In traditional Adire practice, the artist would engage with the medium as a means of storytelling, thus creating a parallel with modern-day subcultures where queer communities share their stories through languages, symbols, and gestures exclusively to their own groups.”
With the backstory firmly in place, Lagos Space Programme goes on to use this through “Project 8.” Clothing is rich in Merino wool, textured beyond just the obvious. For example, it is used for the collar of a white shirt, or a decorative scarf hung and fringed over the top of a crisp, formal coat. The artisanal treatment is echoed by the intricate gold buttons adorning a waistcoat, complementing the regality of the ruffled shirt, or elsewhere, as a knitted white top underpins a striped suit, fitted with a genderless skirt that eschews the traditions of tailoring, thus further commenting on Queer experiences and subversion.
Lagos Space Programme’s “Cloth as a Queer Archive” collection is more than just clothing, it’s representation. Take a look at the collection in the gallery above, and find out more about Adeju Thompson’s brand online.
In case you missed it, you can now take a look at all of SS24’s fashion shows in one place.
Source: Read Full Article