Enter the Brooks African-Print Design Challenge!

In celebration of our upcoming exhibition, African-Print Fashion Now! A Story of Taste, Globalization, and Style, the Brooks is partnering with Spoonflower to hold a two-part African-Print Design Challenge that incorporates the repeating design style of African print.

Above: Inge van Lierop, designer (b. the Netherlands), Vlisco, the Netherlands, Dress, “Hommage à L’Art” collection, 2013, Vlisco wax print, Courtesy Vlisco Museum, Foundation Pieter Fentener van Vlissingen, Helmond, the Netherlands, Photo: Koen Hause

Submit an entry


Kyemah McEntyre, designer (b. Newark, New Jersey, 1997), Mind of Kye, Based in East Orange, New Jersey, The Prom Slayer Dress, 2016, Vlisco wax print, Angelina, Courtesy Fowler Museum at UCLA, Photo: Don Cole

The Brooks recognizes that Africa has a thriving contemporary art scene, with fashion and fabric design being a vital part of it.

Spoonflower, based in Durham, North Carolina, is the world’s first web-based service for custom, on-demand fabric creation making it possible for individuals to design, print and sell their own fabric, wallpaper and gift wrap.

Through the partnership with Spoonflower, the Brooks wants designers around the world to discover the creative process of crafting African-print cloth through color, design, and fabric.

Patricia Waota, designer (b. Côte d’Ivoire), K-Yélé, based in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, Lady Evening Dress, made for the Vlisco Fashion Show, March 28, 2015, in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, Vlisco wax print, Courtesy Uniwax (the Vlisco Group), Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, Photo: Joshua White/JWPictures.com

The first part of the challenge invites creatives to design a textile that highlights the dynamic traditions of bold and colorful patterns found in African dress. The winning textile design will be featured during the exhibition opening and will be used in the second part of the challenge. The winner will receive $200 Spoondollars and a $500 prize from the Brooks. You can submit your textile design entry now through January 2, 2018 at 2 p.m.

Submit an entry

Ken Traoré, designer (b. Senegal), Kenya’s Style, based in Dakar, Senegal, Pagne et marinière, 2016, African-print cloth, Courtesy Fowler Museum at UCLA, Photo: Leslie W. Rabine

During the challenge’s second part, designers will use the winning textile to create an original fashion design. Designers must purchase the winning textile directly from Spoonflower. They can submit their fashion design entry from February 27 – May 6 at brooksmuseum.org. The winning fashion design will be announced during our June Community Day and exhibited at the Brooks from June 16 through August 12. The winner will also receive a $500 prize.

Click here for all the details about the challenge.

Click here to learn more about the exhibition.

Hassan Hajjaj (b. Larache, Morocco, 1960), Afrikan Boy, 2012 from the series My Rock Stars Volume 2, Metallic Lambda print on 3mm Dibond in wood frame with, Geisha maquereau tins, Courtesy Private Collection
Posted by Andria Lisle at 9:00 AM
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