Sankofa derives from the Akan people of West Africa. In the Akan language, Sankofa is expressed as “se wo were fi na wosan kofa a yenki.” In English, this is a direct translation to “It is not taboo to go back and fetch what you forgot.” Raquel Allegra’s Spring Summer 2018 presentation was the epitome of Sankofa. According to The University of Illinois Department of African American Studies, “Sankofa – teaches us that we must go back to our roots in order to move forward. That is, we should reach back and gather the best of what our past has to teach us, so that we can achieve our full potential as we move forward. Whatever we have lost, forgotten, forgone, or been stripped of can be reclaimed, revived, preserved, and perpetuated.” For Raquel Allegra’s Spring Summer 2018 presentation, in order to curate a refreshing, high-spirited, and modernistic collection the designer had to rummage through her archive to fetch materials, ideas, and artistic expressions that were forgotten.
The deconstruction print that is seen throughout the collection is the original artwork crafted by Raquel over a decade ago. Inspired by an African textile by the nomadic Fulani Tribe and Venice Skate Culture, checkered printed linen was used throughout the collection. Crafting a work of art, no matter the medium used, should always be an experiment driven by curiosity and artistic freedom. The tie-dye that’s showcased on the multiple garments and accessories in Raquel Allegra’s Spring Summer 2018 presentation demonstrates the raw level of freedom and curiosity one can have when implementing dye techniques onto fabric. The attendees of this show dressed in Raquel Allegra lounge wear to mimic the relaxed pajama-like silhouettes of the designer’s Spring Summer 2018 collection.
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