For it's latest Spring-Summer collection, Nigerian design label Orange Culture was particularly interested in what it means to be an outcast. The collection entitled "The Faces in the Cloud," was inspired by the Nigerian, post-colonial era witch doctor turned artist, Area Scatter. According to the legend, Area Scatter isolated himself for several months and emerged as a gender-bending musician. As a tribute to Scatter, Orange Culture devised a collection, which debuted this week during Milan Fashion Week Online, that embraced marginalized identities.
Adebayo Oke-Lawal, Founder and Head Designer of Orange Culture, has said that he views his label as a "movement"; one that embraces androgyny, difference, and universal silhouettes. This philosophy is apparent in the latest collection, as pieces contrast hard lines and structures with softer materials.
The models, whether male or female, all wear the same neon orange mullet wigs, further emphasizing the gender fluidity. The lookbook is also taken quite literally against a cloudy sky backdrop, as an allusion to the title and its significance.
One look featured a flowy, floral print top, while another was a rich, solid blue with geometrical cut-outs. Many looks also feature images of eyes and faces, perhaps to honor all those that suffer from a lack of representation. Male models wore dresses and jumpsuits, while female models often wore boxy button-downs and jackets.
In light of a global crisis that has forced all of us to physically isolate ourselves from one another, this collection asks us to be mindful of those that have historically been made to be socially isolated. The pieces were intentionally made to balance strength with fragility, boldness with softness.
Nowadays, the name Area Scatter has become synonymous with disruptiveness and radical self-expression. This is exactly the mission of Orange Culture's latest collection—to celebrate the "Faces in the Clouds" or those obscured by a rigid society.
View all the looks from Orange Culture's Spring/Summer 2021 collection below and shop select styles from the brand here.
Words Natalie Jarrett