Diversification has become a hallmark of the Rwanda arts scene as creatives bring up different aspects of their works.
One such is Abdoul Mujyambere, who took up fashion. One will find Mujyambere either reviewing designs in his sketchbook, while instructing his tailor or aligning his already made outfits, which adorn the cozy one-roomed outlet in Kigali’s Nyamirambo, in Biryogo.
His launch of AM Clothing line into the Kigali scene early in September is a multi-dimensional art project encompassing fashion, music, photography, dance theatre and cinematography.
Having been one of the few acts pioneering contemporary dance and theatre, Mr Mujyambere ventured into acting and creative photography.
He believes art is a freedom he is readily exercising, “I can explore anything freely, without limitation,” he told Rwanda Today.
Mujyambere’s passion goes back to his drawings in primary school “when Art and drawing were not subjects taught in school,” he recalls. His fashion sense shone through his taste for dressing, which impressed people around him.
The AM Clothing line was inspired by his love for nature and travels that included a trip to Senegal in 2015 where he pursued a three-year dance course at Ecole des Sables.
There he discovered how Senegalese possess great fabrics and custom design their own outfits. “They are very creative and experiment around various fabrics, to come up with making beautiful and affordable outfits,” he said.
Mujyambere bought some fabrics, then borrowing from the Senegalese, he embarked on developing and designing clothes at home, in Rwanda.
Four years on, he now designs outfits for himself and close friends. They are part of a range to be launched soon. His new collection themed Nyamirambo, has a unique style that can be characterized as a loose-fitting type.
Anchored in Nature
“It is inspired by this town, where a lot is accomplished with the little that people have. Rwandese have always been stylish, but no one has broadcast this for wider recognition,” he adds.
The Nyamirambo range borrows and underlines his experience and love for the urban and contemporary feel. Most of them are patterned, and yet others inspired by nature, hence the plant and flowery ones.
He even plans to collaborate with his mother to incorporate embroidery into some of the designs.
His outfits are mostly darker colours comprising of green, blue, black, and a few light ones in pink.
Those fabrics with a heavyweight feel are handpicked by him, but his bias is influenced by his relation to theatre and contemporary dance presentation.
Mr Mujyambere acknowledges having shared his initial project with Cedric Amizero, a renowned fashion designer, with whom he consulted.