Tokyo James Autumn Winter 2021 collection entitled ‘OGIDI OKUNRIN’ (‘The Strong Man’) looks at the concept of unity and masculinity through the gaze of the modern Nigerian man. Remaining true to its origins, the brand continues to explore the idea of intersection — where two points connect — and the unification of varied expressions of masculinity. James believes that there is always strength in unity and offers a fresh perspective in menswear fuelled by his dual Nigerian and British heritage.

The ‘OGIDI OKUNRIN’ collection derives from the designer’s views on the expression of masculinity, its diversity and at the very heart questions the evolution of the modern man. Cutting away at the traditional forms of masculinity, James creates room to breed an alternative disposition. Various textures from sequins to weaving to embossing stimulate different feelings and denotes the cragged road that masculinity is expressed upon. Playing with the idea of duality and balance, the collection highlights pieces that can easily be translated and curated into cross generational timeless garments that can also be passed on from one age to the next.

This season continues to build on previous silhouettes with influences from the 1960’s peacock era and an African revision of the traditional British Dandy. Boasting a mixture of vivid and muted colours the collection takes on the notion of reprogramming the traditional suit, intermixing textures and fabrics seen with the use of embossed leather with fine knit and ballistic nylon.

Celebrating the juxtaposition between rigidity and fluidity, details such as diagonal cuts, ruching, chained hardware and quilting are intermixed with a diversity of textured fabrics to fashion surrealistic menswear fit for the diverse expressions of modern-day masculinity. Tokyo James’s Autumn Winter 2021 collection riffs on the men in the ‘60s who preened and posed for famed Malian photographer Malick Sidibé.

FASHION FILM: Delving into his Yoruba heritage and culture, Tokyo James takes inspiration from the Celestial Church, a form of Christianity and the ‘Eyo Masquerade’ festival that takes place once a year in Lagos, Nigeria. The Eyo festival was traditionally held to guide the souls of deceased Kings and Chiefs across the spiritual realm and to help welcome in a new King. The film features Eyo dancers (typically men) robed from head to toe in white flowing clothe, which consists of the traditional mens ‘Agbada’ — a long sleeveless ‘gown’ and an ‘Akete’ (hat). The use of male models cradling babies signifies the nurturing and vulnerability of man and the balance between masculinity and femininity, the beating of the traditional ‘Bàtá drums are used as a means of communication.


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