Stuttgart/London. The British Council, British Fashion Council (BFC) and Mercedes-Benz today announced the winners of the sixth edition of the International Fashion Showcase (IFS), in a prize-giving ceremony at Somerset House, London on February 20, 2017. Mercedes-Benz rewarded Younchan Chung founder and creator of brand the-sirius, winner of the IFS Designer Award with a runway show at Milan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2018.
Sarah Mower MBE, BFC Ambassador for Emerging Talent, presented India with the International Fashion Showcase 2017 Country Award for its exhibition ‘The Indian Pastoralists’. India was selected from 26 participating countries by a panel of industry experts chaired by Sarah to win the competition.
Alistair O’Neill, Reader in Fashion History and Theory at Central Saint Martins, presented the International Fashion Showcase 2017 Curation Award to Agnieszka Jacobson-Cielecka and Wojciech Dziedzic of Poland.
Bettina Haussmann, Senior Manager Sponsoring and Product Placement Mercedes-Benz Cars, presented the International Fashion Showcase 2017 Designer Award to Younchan Chung founder and creator of brand the-sirius for his impressive work showcased in the Korean exhibition.
All of the winners received a trophy designed by KOVA. For the first time, in line with Mercedes-Benz’ commitment to support, nurture and mentor emerging design talent and the brands successful International Designer Exchange Programme (IDEP), which has given extensive support to emerging designers globally, five of whom were showcased in a dedicated Mercedes-Benz Installation at IFS 2017 - the winning designer Younchan Chung was awarded the unique opportunity to stage a runway show to showcase his collection at Milan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2018, one of Mercedes-Benz’ 50 plus global fashion platforms. He will also receive invaluable mentorship by the British Council, the BFC and Mercedes-Benz in the fields of PR, social media, and business management.
Michael Bock, Director Sport- & Lifestyle Marketing, Mercedes-Benz said: “For more than 20 years we have been committed to the world of fashion through promoting creative and talented people who represent both quality and variety in the fashion sector. We are excited to be partnering with the British Fashion Council and the British Council who are committed to support, nurture and mentor emerging design talent. The IFS is a fantastic platform which much like the objective of the Mercedes-Benz International Designer Exchange Programme, cross-pollinates between nations and creates a valuable commercial and critical platform for upcoming and established designers. Of the winner he added; Younchan Chung exemplifies great attention to detail and how this encourages and promotes innovation - an approach that echoes Mercedes-Benz’ own commitment to uncompromising style and progressive design.”
The judging panel is chaired by Sarah Mower MBE, BFC Ambassador for Emerging Talent and Chief Critic at Vogue Runway. Sarah said: “ The incredible creative response from all the countries and designers who have taken part in International Fashion Showcase 2017 edition has taken this annual competition to the next level of importance. The theme of Local/Global has resonated in profound reflections on the environment, identity and the strands which bind people together through generations. Quite apart from the imagination and quality of design and the curation, the conversations exchanged between the exhibitors and visitors have been extraordinarily enlightening - human experiences which have actively promoted understanding, mutual respect and delight in creativity. It is impossible not to walk away from this exhibition without feeling that the hope, resourcefulness and intelligence of the world's young people is capable of pulling the world through the dark and divisive times which face us now.”
Winner of the International Fashion Showcase Designer Award, Younchan Chung of the-sirius, said: “Thank you for the amazing prize. What news! I am so honored to be a part of IFS 2017, and really appreciate the opportunity to spread the word of the-sirius thanks to the British Council, BFC and Mercedes-Benz. I am really happy to win this prize as I only started the-sirius in Seoul Fashion Week last year, but I have dreamed of being a part of the global fashion industry.”
About the International Fashion Showcase
Organised by the British Council and the British Fashion Council in association with London Fashion Week, the International Fashion Showcase is a series of specially-commissioned fashion installations featuring work by emerging designers from all over the world. Now in its sixth year, and its second presented at Somerset House, 550 of the most innovative designers from 70 countries have exhibited as part of the initiative. The theme of the 2017 exhibition is Local/Global. It is the only official exhibition at London Fashion Week that is free and open to the public.
About Mercedes-Benz’ IFS involvement
This is the first time that Mercedes-Benz has supported the IFS initiative. Its involvement is in line with Mercedes-Benz’ 2017 global Fashion Engagement strategy to further strengthen its support for young and emerging talents through a variety of global initiatives. Five emerging designers the brand supports through its International Designer Exchange Programme (IDEP); Angel Chen (China), Anna K (Ukraine), David Ferreira (Portugal), Steven Tai (Canada), and William Fan (Germany) showcased their work in a dedicated area at IFS 2017. Launched in 2009, the Mercedes-Benz IDEP is currently active across most of the 50 plus Mercedes-Benz-supported fashion platforms.
Several countries including Switzerland, Guatemala, the Netherlands, Panama, were nominated or supported by Mercedes-Benz when it came to their dedicated installations for IFS 2017. Switzerland’s Vanessa Schindler, who was supported by Mercedes-Benz Switzerland and is also one of the 10 shortlisted designers, competing for the Grand Prix of the Jury Premiere Vision at the 32. International Festival of Fashion and Photography in Hyeres, a platform also supported by Mercedes-Benz, experimented with urethane, a synthetic material with similar properties to Latex, for her collection, entitled ‘Urethane Pool, chapter 2’. Vanessa received an honourable mention in the Designer category at the IFS. Meanwhile Guatemala’s ‘Millennial Moon’ installation, supported by Mercedes-Benz Guatemala, was inspired by the country’s ancient lunar rituals.
22 Years of Dedication to Fashion by Mercedes-Benz
For the past 22 years, Mercedes-Benz has established itself globally as a partner and title sponsor at selected fashion weeks and events. The brand is currently involved in more than 50 fashion platforms globally, including Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weeks in Sydney, Beijing, Madrid, Amsterdam, Mexico and Berlin, as well as the acclaimed International Festival of Fashion and Photography in Hyères. Mercedes-Benz continues to support selected fashion events and platforms globally and over the course of two decades has made a name for itself in particular for promoting talented new designers.
Mercedes-Benz International Designer Exchange Programme
Over the past 22 years, Mercedes-Benz has established itself globally as a key player and partner at selected international fashion events. The brand is currently involved in more than 50 fashion platforms including Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weeks in Panama, Prague, Russia and Paris amongst others. As part of its global fashion commitment, for over seven years, Mercedes-Benz continues to support young and talented fashion designers through the Mercedes-Benz International Designer Exchange Programme. The programme offers emerging designers a unique opportunity to present their collections outside of their local markets to an international audience. Launched in 2009, the Mercedes-Benz International Designer Exchange Programme is currently active across all of the Mercedes-Benz supported fashion platforms including London, Beijing, Berlin, Budapest, Prague and Istanbul. The Mercedes-Benz International Designer Exchange Programme is often supported by an award programme initiated by Mercedes-Benz and underpinned by a panel of experts. Mercedes-Benz is committed to nurturing and mentoring emerging design talent, and the International Designer Exchange Programme reinforces the brands commitment to this.
About the British Council
The British Council global arts team works with the best of British creative talent to develop innovative, high-quality events and collaborations that link thousands of artists and cultural institutions around the world, drawing them into a closer relationship with the UK. The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We create friendly knowledge and understanding between the people of the UK and other countries. Using the UK’s cultural resources we make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. We work with over 100 countries across the world in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Each year we reach over 20 million people face-to-face and more than 500 million people online, via broadcasts and publications. Founded in 1934, we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. The majority of our income is raised delivering a range of projects and contracts in English teaching and examinations, education and development contracts and from partnerships with public and private organisations. Eighteen per cent of our funding is received from the UK government. More information on the British Council can be found at: www.britishcouncil.org
About the British Fashion Council
The British Fashion Council (BFC) was set up in 1983 to promote British fashion internationally and co-ordinate this promotion through fashion weeks, designer showrooms and showcasing events. The BFC now supports designers beginning at college level and extending to talent identification, business support and showcasing schemes to help British designer businesses develop their profiles and business globally and promote British fashion and its influential role in Britain and London. The BFC Colleges Council offers support to students through its Foundation, BA and MA scholarships, and links with industry through design competitions and Graduate Preview Day. Talent identification and business support schemes include BFC Fashion Film sponsored by River Island; BFC Rock Vault; BFC Headonism; BFC/GQ Designer Menswear Fund; BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund and NEWGEN. The BFC supports Boden’s Future British initiative. The BFC also runs and owns charities including the BFC Fashion Arts Foundation, the BFC Fashion Trust and the BFC Education Foundation. Showcasing initiatives and events include London Fashion Week, London Fashion Week Men’s, LONDON show ROOMS, International Fashion Showcase, London Fashion Week Festival and the annual celebration of excellence in the fashion industry: The Fashion Awards. More information on the British Council can be found at: www.britishfashioncouncil.com
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