NIGERIA’S ‘FASHION SHOW FOR SENIORS’ DRAWS GLOBAL ATTENTION

 NIGERIA’S ‘FASHION SHOW FOR SENIORS’ DRAWS GLOBAL ATTENTION
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Artworks generated by artificial intelligence (AI) have caused a stir on the internet. 

 

With a first glance at the images, one would think they are actually really old people captured from the sides of a runway. 

 

 

However, Nigerian filmmaker and artist Malik Afegbua is the creator of the AI artworks of reimagining a stylish old age. The pictures are a result of Afegbua’s imagination, combining AI software and portraying older-looking models in beautiful clothes. 

 

 

This creation of his has gained the attention of many particularly an Oscar-winning costume designer, Ruth Carter who is behind the Black Panther films. She wrote on instagram “this is so dope!!”. 

 

 

The series of images which is called ‘Fashion Show for Seniors’ has gained more than 100,000 likes on social media, it has without doubt made an impact on the real world.

 

 

In a zoom interview with BBC, Afegbua mentioned that he started off his creative career when someone handed him a camera gift, which was where it took off.

 

 

Thereafter, the business school graduate became a filmmaker and produced commercials, documentary films and virtual reality exhibitions, and at the advent of AI, he also took advantage of it as a new leading force in art. 

 

 

With his fashion show series, he wanted to challenge the stereotypes surrounding aging and what he sees as the insignificance of older people in society. He said, “I have never seen a fashion show for elderly people, but they exist-so why not?”. 

 

 

On the other side of the pendulum, Afegbua has also received some backlash against the use of AI in art, a notion of whether computers can truly replicate human creativity. Although he has a different perspective. He sees an opportunity for artists to advance in their field. 

 

 

 

“Artificial Intelligence learns from us and learns from the World Wide Web. I try to learn how to talk to it, how to communicate better to get exact results from it”. He disclosed to BBC

 

 

 

Looking at the style of the fashion show series images, there is a mix of traditional African Nigerian fashion. “I am a lover of fashion and I always like to experiment. I wanted to mix traditional African Nigerian fashion with something futuristic, something Afro-futuristic”, he said. 

 

 

 

He also has another collection of pictures which he calls his Fiction Series, an inspiration of an Idea of the future. This collection of pictures depicts the people of Ngochola, an imagination of ancient African civilization which was motivated by the stylings of Black Panther’s Wakanda army and Ruth Carter. 

 

 

 

More so, Afegbua plans to continue creating the Elder series and use AI technology to recreate what is possible today and in the time to come.

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Chery-Ann Jason

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