DESIGN fashion

Thebe Magugu’s powerful women’s wear has earned him a place as a finalist for this year’s LVMH Prize.

The designer Thebe Magugu, photographed in his Johannesburg studio.

When the Johannesburg-based women’s wear designer Thebe Magugu, now 25, had nightmares as a child growing up in Kimberley, South Africa, his mother would tell him to record them in a journal. “I found them recently and thought to incorporate them in my work,” he says. He showed the results during his fall 2019 show in Johannesburg in October: a black mesh blouse, a full circle skirt spliced with white duchess satin printed with segments of text (one passage recounts a recurring dream involving dead horses). Transposing these disturbing dreams onto clothing was a statement, the designer says, about turning “times of suffering into a positive, beautiful thing” — in this case, elegant garments that reference unapologetically traditional feminine silhouettes. Magugu, who is a finalist for this year’s LVMH Prize ………………

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