AfricaFashion & StyleNigeria

Nigeria@60: Minister declares Open Fashion Exhibition in Lagos

By Oluwaseun Sonde

A multi-media Fashion Exhibition, aimed at exploring how the nation’s socio-cultural ways have influenced the forging of a national identity from the diverse cultures that make up Nigeria, has opened in Lagos as part of the activities celebrating Nigeria’s Diamond Jubilee..

Declaring open the Exhibition, tagged ‘Cycles of Fashion’, at Terra Kulture, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said it differs from the typical exhibitions because of the deployment of 3D mapping technology that animates the costumes on the mannequins.

He said the incredibly-immersive and colourful exhibition, which is being jointly organized by the Ministry and Terra Kulture, ”will take us on a historic, educative and informative journey of the people and
tribes that make up Nigeria and their unique dress styles”.

Alhaji Mohammed, who described fashion as a valuable part of the nation’s culture, whose importance in the nation’s history cannot be ignored, said the ‘Cycles of Fashion’ will also capture the rich
contribution of fashion and dress code to the Nigerian national identity all through the years.

He said the Fashion Industry has been underrated, especially in its capacity and ability to help advance the government’s economic diversification policy, as well as wealth and job creation – a situation which this administration aims to reverse.

“While we continue to focus on Music and Film, we tend to ignore or underrate the fashion industry. I guess this is because of the lack of adequate information about the industry,” the Minister said, disclosing that the annual revenue of the country’s Fashion Industry is around 2 trillion Naira while the industry comprises about 1,000
businesses that employ over 30,000 practitioners.

”Compare this with the Film Industry, with an annual revenue of 140 billion Naira or the Music Industry, with an annual revenue of 300 billion Naira, and you will understand how huge the Fashion Industry is,” he said.

In her remarks, the Founder of Terra Kulture, Mrs. Bolanle Austen-Peters, said the historic fashion exhibition is a six-part series to showcase Nigeria’s fashion, festivals and religions, among others, from pre-independence to present day Nigeria.

Among the dignitaries who witnessed the exhibition’s opening ceremony were the Directors-General of the National Commission for Museums and Monuments as well as the National Gallery of Art, Prof. Abba Isa Tijjani and Mr. Ebeten Ivara respectively, the Director, National
Archives, Mr. Danjuma Fer, and the Managing Director of Ecobank, Mr. Patrick Akinwuntan.

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