In line with the integral ethos of the brand and journeys toiled, LABRUM’s AW22 Poetics Of Movement collection is an ode to just that; movement. A rallying noun and a borderless verb.
Movement for survival, an instinctual shift. Movement as art, an expressive life form.
Since the beginning of time, humans have ambled through life; shaping the earth after ourselves. Changing locations to establish future generations. To simply fall in love, or to turn our backs on it altogether. Residing with purpose or resettling with hope.
Poetics of Movement looks at the essence of human survival and attempts to demonstrate how movement lies at the very core of us all. The beauty of migration generating new skills and ideas, pushing the human imagination and encouraging change, in spite of the prominence of harmful perceptions. Uplifting those who brave the tides, the winds and societal limitations to find and shape the complex, nuanced and often unresolved label, "immigrant". Giving rise to another reminder of the sheer strength of design and creativity at the hands and minds of such groups.
This season, LABRUM returns home to Sierra Leone and the city of Freetown to work with local craftspeople. Adjusting and readjusting to the quotidian West African lifestyle as the garments develop and the project comes to life. Fabrics developed by these artisans punctuate the show in brilliant oranges, ocean greens and vibrant yellows.
Featured on some of the Aishatu dresses and denim jackets are screen prints of hand drawn, and hand embroidered, Nomoli figures from the Mende and Kissi tribes of Sierra Leone. Their small stature belying their great significance. These stone carved figurines are often kept around or inside the home for protection or good fortune.
They are astonishing historical works of art, Nomoli figures are said to have resembled chiefs and leaders of the time – preserving ancestral practises and marking history.
Foday explores real-time examples of movement through the cities and people of the diaspora, be it the exchange of words or the transportation of fabric. This is a particularly important notion given the spiritual and cultural significance of West African cloth, an art form in itself, used to establish status and narrate tales through motifs and colours, amongst other things.
LABRUM has collaborated with luxury leather goods brand Nosakhari to create three bag shapes for AW22; a heavy duty tote, a crossbody and a folio. Combining their design sensibilities and passion for detail, Nosakhari have used deadstock and leather off-cuts destined for the waste fields to make these. A responsible solution to reduce waste. They have also utilised off-cuts of fabrics used in the LABRUM design studio. The crossbody and folio appear in two distinct styles, a sophisticated camo print and repurposed patchwork, both feature minimalist brass hardware. The canvas and leather tote has five sophisticated colour combinations.
Poetics of Movement deliberately incorporates points of familiarity in West African culture, looking at museum archives from places such as the V&A and drawing colour inspiration from artist Jacob Lawrence’s The Migration Series, which has influencer the colour palette this season. In doing so, LABRUM aims to establish that movement has always been a thing of importance. Inspired both in theory and in practice by the nature of change: movement in life, movement as life.
Creative direction: @iamfods
A special thank you to @britishfashioncouncil , @tiktok_uk and @blonsteinproductions for the support in making this show happen.