Monday 18 February 2019


Thebe Magugu from South Africa has been announced as the winning designer of International Fashion Showcase 2019. The judging panel called him ‘a leader of his generation’ and said that his installation ‘not only has striking visual impact but real clarity. It is a space which gives a sense of past, present and a bright future for Thebe and his country.’ For IFS 2019, Thebe Magugu presented designs featuring motifs from Africa’s story-rich past but with a forward-looking, global approach. His installation illustrates the profound changes in South Africa by putting the country’s constitution centre stage.

Duran Lantink from Netherlands was awarded a special mention for his collection. The judges said: ‘There is a sense that the collection is only the beginning of a continuous exploration with countless possibilities and impacts on others working in the fashion industry.’ Duran presented Straight from the sale bins questioning the permanent state of sale and discount in the fashion industry, casting a critical eye on the phenomena of Black Friday and the resulting sales riots. He also presented 0% Duran, Lantink’s brand which creates fashion without production and refashions garments from discount sites or outlets, giving them a new appeal.

Cedric Mizero from Rwanda was given a special mention for his curation. The judges said: ‘Cedric Mizero is without doubt a cultural changemaker for his country. His work has the ability to collapse the local and the global into a message that is universal and deeply human.’ He used objects from everyday life in a Rwandan village – including rush mats and pill cases - to draw attention to the issues of marginalised communities and cultures in his country. However, rather than focus on the negatives often associated with rural life in a developing country, Mizero also celebrates the wealth of village life.

The winners were decided by a panel of cultural and commercial fashion experts chaired by Sarah Mower MBE, BFC Ambassador for Emerging Talent and Chief Critic at

For London Fashion Week, the showcase has a new format. For the first time, 16 selected designers from across the globe are showcasing a series of compelling installations to represent their respective country. The designers explore politics, sustainability, identity and heritage and show their latest designs in immersive environments. The free exhibition continues until 24 February.

The 16 countries represented are: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, India, Georgia, Italy, Kenya, Lebanon, Lithuania, Netherlands, Rwanda, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Uruguay and Vietnam. 

The free exhibition is a key part of London Fashion Week, giving both the public and industry professionals the opportunity to discover emerging fashion from five continents: Africa, North and South America, Asia and Europe and to celebrate its global relevance. The collections presented offer a balanced mix of womenswear and menswear exploring topical but universally shared issues and present new ideas and solutions that are shaping fashion globally.

In another first, these designers are supported through a bespoke online programme, developed by London College of Fashion, UAL, which will cover all aspects of business development from branding to sales and production to sustainability. They also travelled to London in August 2018 to attend a two-week talent development programme. This tailored cultural residency and business skills training will give the emerging designers the professional support that is often difficult to access, provided by some of the UK’s leading fashion and creative experts.

The designers spent one week immersed in the creative community of Somerset House Studios where they were supported by a range of studio artists whose skills and expertise range from ethical fashion and sustainability to tech. Another week was spent with experts from London College of Fashion, UAL reviewing their business and brand development goals. During both residencies, the designers explored, tested and developed a series of collaborations and creative projects that formed part of their installations, and were given important insights into all aspects of business from branding and communications to sales. 

Being part of IFS can be the springboard to international recognition. Eight designers who have previously shown at IFS have been nominated for the LVMH prize, 32 nominated for the Woolmark prize and four have won Hyères awards, these include Bodice and the-sirius. 15 have shown on schedule at LFW such as Per Götesson, Rejina Pyo and Xiao Li, five were awarded NEWGEN sponsorship and five have participated in LONDON show ROOMS in Paris.

Full citations on the three designers: 

IFS Award – Thebe Magugu, South Africa 

There is a feeling that Thebe Magugu is a leader of his generation, and his work has a strong sense of the responsibility that comes with being a voice for one’s culture. His project for IFS holds his peers to values of social empowerment and cultural transformation. It shares the platform of IFS with fellow creatives honouring the spirit of friendship, respect and excellence on which IFS was founded. There is a strong coherence between Thebe’s collection and his installation which not only has striking visual impact but real clarity. It is a space which gives a sense of past, present and a bright future for Thebe and his country. Beyond this the maturity and professionalism shown throughout the IFS development programme has revealed a designer who maximises every opportunity he is given and embraces every chance to learn from others and share their own creativity.

Special Mention Collection – Duran Lantink, Netherlands 

Duran Lantink embodies the courage evoked in this year’s exhibition title ‘Brave New Worlds’. Thoroughly sustainable in his approach, Duran balances creativity, technical skill and a powerful manifesto for change. His work offers a new system of designing and a business model capable of morphing and evolving. This agility is balanced with a coherence across the garments and the visual output. There is a sense that the collection is only the beginning of a continuous exploration with countless possibilities and impacts on others working in the fashion industry. It is all delivered with wit, energy and a deep respect for designers all over the world.

Special Mention Curation – Cedric Mizero, Rwanda

Cedric Mizero is without doubt a cultural changemaker for his country. His work has the ability to collapse the local and the global into a message that is universal and deeply human. He communicates complex narratives through the medium of clothes and their practice is truly multidisciplinary – across photography, film, spatial installation, fashion and object. His space is an optimistic and joyful celebration of his culture and the people who embody it. Cedric demonstrates a generosity of spirit and largeness of heart in every aspect of his practice, taking every project as an opportunity to learn, share and create social and cultural bonds.

Notes to Editor

International Fashion Showcase: Listings Information

Dates: 11-24 February 2019 / Opening Hours:  Monday to Sunday, 10.00-18.00 (last admission 17.00)

Address: Somerset House, West Wing Galleries, Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 1LA

Free admission / Transport: Temple, Embankment, Charing Cross, Waterloo


For press and media enquiries about the International Fashion Showcase contact:

Rebecca Ward

T: +44 (0) 7977 071450 / E:


For more information about the British Council contact:

Ekene Oboko, Media Relations Officer, British Council

T: +44 (0) 20 3285 3635 / E:  


For media enquiries about the British Fashion Council contact:

Emma Frisby, PR Manager

T: +44 (0) 20 7759 1950 / E:


For media enquiries about Somerset House contact:

Josephine Rodrigues, Head of Press

T: +44 (0)20 7845 4638 / E:


The International Fashion Showcase 2019 designers are:

Bangladesh – Rahemur Rahman

Brazil – David Lee

Canada – Curtis Oland

Colombia – Laura Laurens

Georgia – Situationist

India – Naushad Ali

Italy – Ice Surface Temperature

Kenya – Ami Doshi Shah

Lebanon – Roni Helou

Lithuania – Morta Nakaite

Netherlands – Duran Lantink

Rwanda – Cedric Mizero

South Africa – Thebe Magugu

Sri Lanka – Amesh Wijesekera

Uruguay – Clara Aguayo

Vietnam - Môi-Điên

International Fashion Showcase 2019 images 

Twitter and Instagram: @british_design #IFS2019

About International Fashion Showcase

The International Fashion Showcase was established in the year of the London Olympics as a platform for emerging fashion designers to exhibit their work during London Fashion Week as a competition that shares the same values of the Olympics; fraternity, respect, equality and excellence. Finalists were included a group show of work from Botswana, Nigeria and Sierra Leone, as well as Belgium, China, Estonia, Italy, Japan, Korea and USA. Korea was the winning country with their exhibition.

The subsequent four IFS have presented prizes to designers and curators from Bahrain, Czech Republic, Colombia, Estonia, Japan, Lebanon, Nigeria and South Korea; and partnerships with On|Off and Fashion Scout.

Since 2012, more than 600 of the most exciting international designers from 70 countries have exhibited in the International Fashion Showcase. It reflects London’s reputation for promoting and supporting new talent in the creative industries – a number of whom are working within Somerset House – by providing opportunities for designers from overseas to engage with the UK fashion community and build international connections.

The Advisory Panel for the International Fashion Showcase 2019 includes:

Chair: Sarah Mower MBE, BFC Ambassador for Emerging Talent and Chief Critic at

Alexandra Gordon, Liberty

Alistair O’Neill, Fashion Curator

Anders Christian Madsen, British Vogue

Andrew Tucker, London College of Fashion, UAL

Anna Orsini, British Fashion Council

Ashish Gupta, Ashish

Barbara Grispini, D/ARK

Ceri Hand, Somerset House

Lauren Indvik, Vogue Business

Hikari Yokoyama, Paddle8

José Teunissen, London College of Fashion, UAL

Mandi Lennard, Mandi’s Basement

Natalie Kingham, Matches

Niamh Tuft, British Council

Nick Vinson, Wallpaper

Robb Young, Business of Fashion

Sarah Mann, British Council

Shonagh Marshall, curator

Stavros Karelis, Machine-A

Steve Salter, i-D

Tristan Webber, Royal College of Art


About the British Fashion Council

The British Fashion Council (BFC) was set up in 1983 to promote British fashion internationally and co-ordinate this promotion through fashion weeks, exhibitions and showcasing events. The BFC now supports designers beginning at college level and extending to talent identification, business support and showcasing schemes to help British designer businesses develop their profiles and business globally and promote British fashion and its influential role in Britain and London. The BFC Colleges Council offers support to students through its Foundation, BA and MA scholarships, links with industry through design competitions and Graduate Preview Day. Talent identification and business support schemes include BFC Fashion Film; BFC/GQ Designer Menswear Fund; BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund and NEWGEN which includes womenswear, menswear and accessories. The BFC supports Boden’s Future British initiative. The BFC also runs and owns charities including the BFC Fashion Arts Foundation, the BFC Fashion Trust and the BFC Education Foundation. Showcasing initiatives and events include London Fashion Week, London Fashion Week Men’s, LONDON show ROOMS, International Fashion Showcase, London Fashion Week Festival and the annual celebration of creativity and innovation in the fashion industry: The Fashion Awards.

About Somerset House

Inspiring contemporary culture

One of the city’s most spectacular and well-loved spaces, Somerset House is a new kind of arts centre in the heart of London, designed for today’s audiences, artists and creatives – an inspirational community where contemporary culture is imagined, created and experienced.

From its 18th century origins, Somerset House has played a central role in our society as a place where our culture and collective understanding of the world is shaped and defined. In 2000, it began its reinvention as a cultural powerhouse and home for arts and culture today, creating unique and stimulating experiences for the public, bringing them into direct contact with ideas from the greatest artists, makers and thinkers of our time. Our distinctive and dynamic year-round programme spans the contemporary arts in all its forms, from cutting-edge exhibitions and installations to annual festivals, seasonal events in the courtyard including Film4 Summer Screen, Summer Series and Skate, and an extensive learning and engagement programme.

As well as welcoming over 3million visitors annually, Somerset House houses the largest and most diverse creative communities in the country – from one-person start-ups to successful creative enterprises including MOBO, British Fashion Council, Dance Umbrella, Improbable Theatre, Hofesh Shechter Company, and Dartmouth Films.

In 2016 we launched Somerset House Studios – a new experimental workspace connecting artists, makers and thinkers with audiences. Currently housing over 80 artists and Makerversity (a community of over 250 emergent makers), the Studios are a platform for the development of new creative projects and collaboration, promoting work that pushes bold ideas, engages with urgent issues and pioneers new technologies.

London College of Fashion: Shaping Lives Through Fashion

London College of Fashion, UAL is a world leader in fashion design, media and business education. In boundary-pushing research where fashion intersects with science, engineering, and technology, and in enterprise, where it partners with top brands and helps launch new businesses. It has been nurturing creative talent for over a century, offering courses in all things fashion. Across every subject, it encourages students to examine the past and challenge the present. To have inventive, assertive ideas that challenge social and political agendas. It gives them the skills, opportunities – and above all, the freedom – to put those ideas into practice. 

It starts with education, with over 70 undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, and 165 short courses. Students come from over 100 countries. Some learn fashion design – its heritage, craftsmanship, radical thinking and high-tech practice. Others develop analytical skill, creative thinking and business acumen. Others still: cutting-edge approaches to traditional, experiential, and interactive media. They all examine the present in light of its deep historical context. And learn how to use fashion to build a sustainable future, and improve the way we live.

LCF moves fashion forward, by looking beyond it. We partner with fashion’s most successful brands and labels – both high street and luxury. LCF graduates are in key positions across every dimension of the fashion industry, from established designers like Jimmy Choo OBE, Sophia Webster and JW Anderson to rising stars like Ryan Lo and respected entrepreneur and former Chairman of the British Fashion Council, Harold Tillman CBE as well as fashion journalists Melanie Rickey and Sarah Harris.

In the next five years, LCF are moving to a single site at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in east London. There we will continue to do what we do today. Pioneer how we all consume and practice fashion. Use fashion design, business and media to shape culture, economics, and society.

And through fashion, shape lives.


About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We work with over 100 countries in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Last year we reached over 65 million people directly and 731 million people overall including online, broadcasts and publications. We make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. We receive 15 per cent core funding grant from the UK government.