DUBAI: The 20 semi-finalists for the 2021 LVMH Prize for Young Designers have been announced, and among the designers chosen is Cynthia Merhej, the Lebanese talent behind womenswear label Renaissance Renaissance. Merhej, who is based between Lebanon and France, is the first Arab woman to be shortlisted for the prestigious prize. She has been selected alongside fashion creatives that hail from around the world, spanning from Italy to Nigeria and Japan to the United States.
Due to coronavirus restrictions, Merhej’s collection will be shown in a virtual showroom from April 6 to 11 on lvmhprize.com, alongside the collections of the other 19 semi-finalists. Visitors will be able to vote on their favorites, a first for the LVMH Prize.
“I am very grateful to all the candidates from more than 110 countries for taking part in this year’s competition and I would like to congratulate the semi-finalists,” said Delphine Arnault, executive vice president of Louis Vuitton and founder of the LVMH Prize in a released statement.
“All the semi-finalists have incorporated a responsible stance in their creative vision: use of innovative or traditional materials, upcycling, recycled fibres, artisanal and local approaches. These initiatives echo the shift in the fashion and luxury industries,” she added.
The winner of the 2021 LVMH Prize will receive $352,000 plus a year of mentorship from designers and executives within LVMH.
Meanwhile, the winner of the Karl Lagerfeld special prize will receive $176,000 and a year of mentorship.
Helping select the winning designers for the eighth edition of the award is the LVMH Prize’s new ambassador, 23-year-old tennis champion Naomi Osaka. She will join the newest additions to the Committee of Experts, including part-Palestinian model Bella Hadid and French actress Lea Seydoux, among others.
Read on for the 2021 LVMH Prize semi-finalists.
AGR by Alicia Robinson, womenswear and menswear, British designer based in London
Bianca Saunders, by Bianca Saunders, menswear, British designer based in London
Charles de Vilmorin, by Charles de Vilmorin, genderless collections, French designer based in Paris
Christopher John Rogers, by Christopher John Rogers, womenswear, American designer based in New York
Conner Ives, by Conner Ives, womenswear, American designer based in London
Federico Cina, by Federico Cina, genderless collections, designer italian based in Sarsina
Kidsuper, by Colm Dillane, menswear, American designer based in New York
Kika Vargas, by Kika Vargas, womenswear, Colombian designer based in Bogota
Lagos Space Programme, by Adeju Thompson, genderless collections, Nigerian designer based in Lagos
Lukhanyo Mdingi, by Lukhanyo Mdingi, womenswear and menswear, South African designer based in Cape Town
Midorikawa, by Taku Midorikawa, genderless collections, Japanese designer based in Tokyo
Nensi Dojaka, by Nensi Dojaka, womenswear, Albanian designer based in London
Post Archive Faction (PAF), by Dongjoon Lim, menswear, South Korean designer based in Seoul
Renaissance Renaissance, by Cynthia Merhej, womenswear, Lebanese designer based in Beirut
Rier, by Andreas Steiner, genderless collections, Italian designer based in Paris
Rui, by Rui Zhou, genderless collections, Chinese designer based in Shanghai
Saul Nash, by Saul Nash, menswear, British designer based in London
Shuting Qiu, by Shuting Qiu, womenswear, Chinese designer based in Shanghai
Taakk, by Takuya Morikawa, menswear, Japanese designer based in Tokyo
Wed, by Amy Trinh and Evan Phillips, womenswear, British designers based in London