DEAD WHITE MENS CLOTHES
Accra, Kantamanto Market; where dead white men’s clothes find new life.
At Accra’s Kantamanto market, shoppers dig through piles of clothing and haggle over prices. There are treasures to be found here, luxury is just a few Cedis away, a fraction of what the price was seasons ago overseas. The market is an economy thriving over the leftovers of a more privileged fashion industry in the West.
When the first wave of second-hand clothes were dumped here locals reacted “Obroni wawu” (literally, the white man is dead) assuming the previous owners were dead. In reality, Ghana, like many African countries, was becoming the dumping ground for the textile industry’s waste. Places like Kantamanto Market are where Western decadence meets local ingenuity.
This is the narrative DEAD WHITE MENS CLOTHES is born out of, a story it is helping to rewrite. Created by Ghanaian artist Jojo Gronostay with AMSTERDAM BERLIN, DWMC is provoking a discourse on wastefulness in fashion, which is simultaneously a critique of capitalism and colonial vestiges that remain. Each and every item that makes up the collection is unique, all clothes were found on the Kantamanto Market and compel us to view fashion and identity in a new context and reimagine luxury. It forces us to ask: What is luxury in the future?
Shop the unique items here. The label’s profits are donated to support young African designers.
Words SARAH OSEI