Last year, I had an insightful conversation with the Creative Director of Meena, Uju Offiah. We discussed The Lagos Fashion and Design Week and her collection. Uju took me on a spectacular journey of her fabric design framework; she created prints using the NSIBIDI writings of the Ancient Ibo times, to tell a story of struggle,hope and and victory. I was inspired and awed by the sheer creative genius. I couldn’t wait to see the collection.. and amazing it was! Hers was by far one of the best shows at LFDW 2015!
Meena: OCHIAGHA (NEORETIC WARRIORS) .
We drew inspiration from various sources for our Spring/Summer 2016 collection. As our first venture into custom made prints, we were influenced by”‘NSIBIDI’. Nsibidi is a pre-colonial symbolic means of communication among the Ibos, in the South Eastern part of Nigeria. The symbols were arranged in clusters to tell a story of victory, resilience, love & hate, peace & unity of a Nigerian“.
Details are influenced by strips (ropes) to create a bound effect of unity and peace amidst the challenges & insurgencies ( in the Northern part of Nigeria) we are faced with as a nation. Further details are flap layerings of shapes- trapeziums, triangles and rhombus. Hand embroidered Nsibidi symbols also run through the collection.Architectonic undertones which is our core is visible in origami details and sophisticated cuts.
See photos below:
PHOTOGRAPHY: Lakin Ogunbanwo
ART DIRECTION: Lakin Ogunbanwo & Uju Offiah
MODEL : Aduke of Beth model
MAKE UP: Stella