By Jenny Brownlees, Jan 26 2017 04:22PM
I’m Anissa Meddeb, a 23 year old designer based in New York City. I was born in Paris but grew up in Tunisia. I returned to Paris to study History of Art and Design, colour theory and drawing for three years, at L’Ecole du Carrousel du Louvres.
In 2011 I moved to America and studied at Parsons School of Design. During my time there I interned for Marc Jacobs Accessories and ThreeAsFour, a group of Avant Garde designers. I studied abroad for six months at Central Saint Martins in London, as well as spending a few months in Paris, where I interned for A.P.C.
Upon graduating, I worked for Outdoor Voices. Most recently I’ve founded my own label of high-end ready to wear clothing, Anissa Aida. My first collection was Spring/Summer 2016 and I am currently showcasing Autumn/Winter 2018.
ABOUT THE COLLECTION
This collection is entitled ‘Africa through the looking glass’. The general theme of my work is to reflect the interaction between clothes and cultures. As well as my Tunisian heritage I have been lucky enough to experience living in a number of different countries, all with different ways of life. My aim is to represent a mix of cultures, ideas and point of views.
The inspiration for my Autumn Winter collection came from the extraordinary work of two photographers from Mali: Seydou Keïta and Malick Sidibé. They are both considered as the fathers of African photography. Through their lenses they captured the transition of Mali to independence and modernity. Sidibé particularly immortalized the “Dolce Vita Africana” of the 70’s.
People would come to their studio to get their portrait taken wearing both traditional African clothing but also fashionable European clothing of the 70’s. This inspired the cuts and silhouettes of my current collection.
What inspires me the most is that these two photographers were able to create their own world through their work. Through my collection, my aim is to immerse the wearer in my own universe, with an interactive relationship between African and Western aesthetics.
Intercultural dialogue is the guiding thread of my collections; I apply the same concept to the fabrics. All fabrics used are high quality natural materials sourced throughout the world, including Pervian Alpaca, English silks and Italian wools.
I am also continuing collaborations I started last season with Tunisian craftsmen, who produce my hand-woven silks.
My muse for AW 18 is urban, comes from all different cultures, has no age, feels creative and enjoys art. She/he is conscious that clothing is a way to express a personality and a lifestyle and is willing to question how we dress, and experience something new.
Each piece of the Anissa Aida collection is derived from a foundational concept, making it unique but wearable simultaneously.
Looking forward, I hope to continue pursuing my passion and growing the brand. I will debut Afria through the looking glass in Berlin on January 16th, followed by a model presentation at Fashion Scout in London on Friday February 17th.
Anissa Aida is already available in stores globally, including Utter London, Studio183 Berlin and Scandi Market. My wish is to evolve this further and eventually open a flagship store.