LVMH Prize 2023 reveals names of nine finalists
LVMH Prize 2023 has revealed the names of the finalists in this year’s competition. And in a counterblast to the power of fashion schools, four of this year’s finalists are self-taught.
The giant luxury conglomerate announced Friday the following selection for its much-anticipated final: Aaron Esh, Bettter, Burc Akyol, Diotima, Luar, Magliano, Paolina Russo, Quira and Setchu. Underlining the influence of Central Saint Martins, the world’s single most important fashion college, four finalists are graduates of the London school.
Culled from 2,400 original candidates, these nine finalists emerged from 22 semi-finalists who presented their ideas inside LVMH’s HQ in Paris during the recent Paris Fashion Week in early March. The winner will be announced on June 7, in the final’s traditional home, the Frank Gehry-designed Louis Vuitton Foundation on the northern edge of the Bois de Boulogne.
The dreamchild of Delphine Arnault, the recently appointed CEO of Christian Dior Couture, the LVMH Prize celebrates its 10th edition this year. The winner will receive an award of €300,000, while a further €150,000 is given to the winner of the Karl Lagerfeld Prize, both of them also earning a year’s mentoring within the LVMH Group. All of the finalists receive €10,000 for making it this far.
UK-born Esh, 32, is a graduate of Central Saint Martins who has won a great deal of notice for his constructivist menswear and coolly offbeat tailoring; Better by Julie Pelipas, is a self-taught Ukrainian based in London, who launched her label in 2019 and is admired for her exaggerated sense of proportion and punchy style.
French-born Burc Akyol is a Paris-based designer and graduate of France’s leading fashion college IFM who focuses on gender fluid designs and retro futuristic silhouettes – his gold crinoline paired with silver hands bra was the most-admired look on a stockman at the semi-final.
Diotima by Rachel Scott, an Istituto Marangoni graduate, weaves sensational knitwear incorporating elements of her Jamaican roots with an organic sense of style; while New York-based and self-taught Luar by Raul Lopez has won critical acclaim in recent years for his luxe gothic sense of tailoring and cool shows on the final evening of the American runway season. Luca Magliano is a very happening, and again self-taught, creator from Bologna, who has been showing street tailoring successfully in the Milan runway season for several years.
Paolina Russo, by Paolina Russo and Lucile Guilmard of French and Canadian origin, are two more graduates of Central Saint Martins, who concentrate on ergonomic, body con, super heroine knits. Quira, again self-taught, is an experienced Rome-born designer who has done stints at Jil Sander and Celine, who debuted her label sensationally in Milan in September 2021. Her nonchalantly sculptural silhouettes, dream like proportions and feminine take on deconstruction mark her out as a fashion designer of real power.
And, last but not least, Setchu by Satoshi Kuwata from Japan is yet another former Saint Martins student, who whips up a genderless blend of cool knitwear, fencing shirts and smartly proportioned classics.
The semi-finalist jury is composed of some 80 members including multiple Vogue and other magazine editors; distinguished critics, hipster stylists, influencers, walkers and fine artists and actors – from Cindy Sherman to Lea Seydoux – along with the author of this story.
The final jury is made up of key designers within LVMH – Jonathan Anderson, Maria Grazia Chiuri, Nicolas Ghesquière, Marc Jacobs, Kim Jones, Nigo, Stella McCartney and Silvia Venturini Fendi – along with Delphine Arnault, Jean-Paul Claverie and Sidney Toledano.
Previous LVMH Prize winners have included S.S. Daley, Nensi Dojaka, Thebe Magugu and Grace Wales Bonner, while special Prize winners included Jacquemus, Rokh and Hood by Air.
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