On the 17th of July, ALÁRA Lagos launched the first edition of its Emerge ALÁRA Award. Emerge ALARA – The Fashion Edition sought out the most promising young designer and fashion media creative to offer them the opportunity to present a retail collection and exhibition respectively at ALARA, as well as receive mentorship from a carefully selected team of advisors.
Applications were received from Kenya, South Africa, Senegal, France, Nigeria, Switzerland and the USA in the fields of Fashion Apparel Design, Accessory Design, Photography and Filmmaking.
After four months of competition, including a cash grant to create a unique showpiece and a thorough vetting process by an esteemed panel of judges – Bola Adesola- CEO Standard Chartered Bank, Duro Olowu- International Award Winning Designer, Uzoma Dozie – CEO Diamond Bank, Folake Coker – Creative Director, Tiffany Amber, Helen Jennings – Co-founder, Nataal, Ronke Bamisedun – Founder, BWL PR Agency and Reni Folawiyo – Founder, ALÁRA, the winner of the 2018 Emerge ALÁRA Awards was announced on Saturday 27th October at the Finale Event sponsored Martell.
Faith Oluwajimi, creative director of BLOKE was announced the winner of The Emerge ALÁRA Awards 2018. Faith Oluwajimi will receive a grant to produce a collection and an opportunity to be stocked at ALARA. He will also receive mentorship from industry leaders.
In recognition of their incredible talent, craftsmanship and originality, the judges decided to name Kayinsola Onalaja of ONALAJA and Ekwurike Chukwuma of WUMAN as runners-up. They will each receive business mentorship and the opportunity to retail at ALARA.
Mrs Folawiyo said: “The talent of the 6 finalists was so arresting, it was impossible not to recognise the runners-up. We were impressed by the abstract resourcefulness that instils WUMAN’s designs, coupled with the designer’s use of African touches finished in clean lines. ONALAJA’s designs were also seductive; the designer’s exquisite intricacy and detailing really brought each piece to life.
The first edition of the Emerge ALÁRA Awards received hundreds of applications from young talent all across Africa and its diaspora. Its success is evidence of the massive talent our continent carries and I am proud ALÁRA has found them and supports the development of young talent.”
There were no finalists in the Fashion Media Category, although ALÁRA looks forward to discovering talented media creatives in the next edition.
The search will continue in 2019 for the next Emerge ALÁRA Awardees.