ALÁRA Lagos Debuts A Stellar Multi-Sensory Exhibition at Brooklyn Museum

From June 23rd till October 22, 2023

Since its inception in 2015, Alára Lagos has been a major attraction in West Africa, housing luxury art and design by African creatives. The contemporary retail store, located in Victoria Island and owned by Reni Folawiyo, looks to promote and celebrate African luxury and lifestyle predominantly through fashion. The name itself, which means wondrous performer, suggests an impact that reaches beyond the four walls in which the building stands. Folawiyo has stated that her aim is to “create a meeting point for design, fashion and art, and has now taken the concept store global with its recent exhibition in Brooklyn Museum.


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The exhibition, dubbed Africa Fashion, is one the museums largest ever presentation, with over 180 works by 40 designers from over 20 countries across the continent. Organised thematically, this multi-sensory experience features immersive displays of haute couture and ready-to-wear apparel, photographs, literature, sketches, music, textiles, and jewellery to name a few. Speaking on her contribution to the exhibition, Folawiyo shares: Combining this with the urgency of all things African, from afrobeat to tech to consumer, it felt natural, and also like a responsibility, to bring that positioning to bear globally. Brooklyn Museum is a terrific partner because, like Alára, it engages with culture and builds community on so many levels.

For Alára’s unique installation, Folawiyo collaborated with Ernestine White-Mifetu, the co-curator for the exhibition and curator of African Art at Sills Foundation. “The partnership with Alára is an essential part of the discussion the exhibition is having around the importance of African creatives choosing how they are represented, White-Mifetu says. “Reni is showcasing the best and brightest in a way that allows them to shine—and the exhibition is doing the same. The exhibition is slated to run all summer from June 23 to October 22, 2023. It features a capsule collection in collaboration with WafflesNCream (waf.lagos) and Dye Lab, as well as ceramics from Clementina van Her, conceptual pieces by Cedric Mizero, furniture by Ousmane Mbaye and much more.