Nigerian singer Falana has grown a talented crew of local designers-the likes of Orange Culture, Andrea Iyamah, and Iamisigo. She’s naturally a front row fixture at the Lagos Fashion Week. The video for ‘Ride or Die,’ a new song that she put together and produced, Falana brings these young fashion stars in conversation with each other.
“I like seeing how other designers, and pieces from their different collections, can intermingle,” she says.
Indeed, you could argue that the video puts Nigeria’s creative community under one roof quite literally. Falana chose to shoot the Daniel Obasi–directed visual at Lagos’s National Arts Theatre, a historical landmark that architecturally stands apart from much of the rest of the Nigerian city.
When she previewed the video to friends, they often couldn’t place where it was shot. “The kind of images that people see coming out of Nigeria, or off the continent as a whole, can be very stereotypical,” she says. “So to see this amazing architecture and to say that this was done in Lagos is kind of a statement for us.”
With some extraordinary fashions on display in the video as well, the historical setting gains a modern sheen. “I just really want to make sure that I’m representing my culture and what we represent on a global stage,” says Falana. “There’s so much talent in Nigeria, and there are so many designers making amazing pieces that are very contemporary, and are internationally accessible, but still represent where we come from in a way that other brands won’t.”
“Nobody can replicate what we’re doing here, from an art point of view to a fashion point of view to a music point of view,” she says. “There’s a rhythm, a heartbeat, a history; there’s roots to this.”