Dakar ~ Senegal
Oumou Sy is a designer seeking to create the infrastructure so far lacking in African fashion. In 1997 she opened the cultural centre and cybercafé Metissacana in Dakar. She also plans the annual Semaine de la Mode [Fashion week] in Dakar, when designers from various African countries are able to show their work to other designers, purchasers and sellers. Work by Oumou Sy ignores the boundaries between fashion design, textile design and costume design. Her clothes are theatrical couture, combining history and traditions with modern forms. Oumou Sy’s work is highly regarded not only on the catwalk but also on the streets of Dakar. This could be seen in the carnival procession, which she organised for the first time in 1998.