Performance: Kè fila by Namsa Leuba and Kezia Frederick
A blending together of contemporary fashion with traditional African tribal dress.
During the Offprint 2016 publishing fair at Tate Modern (Britain), Self Publish, Be Happy presented a programme of events exploring the blurring of boundaries between on/offline existence and how this affects the distribution of photographs. Swiss-Guinean fashion photographer Namsa Leuba collaborated with British-Saint Lucian print designer Kezia Frederick on Kè fila, a performance for which they cast fifteen young people of colour from London and styled them with makeup, prints and fabrics inspired by plant decorations from Hans Silvester’s book Natural Fashion: Tribal Decoration.
The idea was to have these young people of colour occupying a space within an institution where minorities are often underrepresented. It was a political and social statement. While they were occupying the space they were at once being looked at and at the same time recording themselves by taking over our Self Publish, Be Happy Instagram feed – and so making themselves visible and present off and online.