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Following the success of their first design event in February, whatiftheworld staged Number Two in their new Woodstock gallery space in October. The Woodstock gallery is whatiftheworld’s third gallery and what with the popular Saturday Neighbourhood Goods Market on their books too, they might soon be considered a brand. Judging by the hordes of bobos (bourgeoisie bohemians) in attendance, they can certainly no longer be called “emerging”.
Number Two featured a product showcase and a fashion show from independent designers. Conceptual and readymade wit acted as aesthetic glue among the four designers included in the product showcase. Liam Mooney showed a Mechano-inspired collection built up of off-the-shelf components, while Xandre Kriel also tapped into a DIY-approach with his modular collection. Adriaan Hugo showed off his typically angular pieces, but diversified from his black palette to incorporate blue and yellow. Lyall Sprong continued his exploration into specular reflections and also brought a tone of old-school Dada to his work.
On the fashion front, Petro Steyn’s White Noise and Richard de Jager’s Pwhoa reasserted the case for avant garde fashion in South Africa. Steyn’s collection, Zonkey (something between a zebra and a donkey), used neoprene offcuts to create bodysuits with uncanny shapes and forms. De Jager veered from his brightly coloured past to show a monochrome knit collection inspired by sea anemones.
Two slightly more conventional collections included Dandy Savant, who used “conflict” as departure for their suits and bomber jackets made from space-age material. Suzaan Heyns’s collection for Abraham + Louisa was also hinged on contrasts with structure playing against soft and masculine shoes paired with tailored dresses.