FRANCE – PARIS
Born in Cameroon in 1968, Imane Ayissi comes from a family of artists and sportsmen. He began his career as a dancer with the Ballet National du Cameroun and as a model. This modelling activity gave rise to a desire to create fashion designs.
With this in mind, Imane designed his first clothes for his mother, none other than former model Julienne Honorine Eyenga Foud, elected Miss Cameroon in 1960. He subsequently collaborated with one of the country’s leading ateliers before moving to Paris. In this city, he will propose collections sold on demand and made-to-measure for private customers.
In 2020, after several presentations in the French capital, the sub-Saharan designer joins the official calendar as a guest member.
Through the use of innovative, contemporary and resolutely haute couture design, the creator enjoys combining delicacy, colour and subtlety between Eastern traditions and Western fashion.
With each collection, Imane Ayissi shares his love for fabrics and craftsmanship, while also celebrating African textile heritage and identity. A man deeply attached to his roots and looking to the future, Imane Ayissi is committed to ethical and sustainable production. He achieves this by using natural materials such as raffia, cotton and obom (a regenerating tree bark) to give life to raw pieces mixed with silk and lace.
“In my creations, I always try to showcase the know-how of the African continent and its craftsmen. For Ghana I work with Kentés – old-fashioned hand-weaving – and with Burkina Faso, Faso Dan Fani – traditional cotton-thread fabrics made on old-fashioned looms.”
All his collections bear an evocative name in Ewondo, his mother tongue. A tribute to beauty and joy that the designer loves to share. For the past 11 years, he has been working in collaboration with the Cultural Center for Cameroonian Fashion to promote fashion worldwide.
He is also present at Africa Fashion, an exhibition on African fashion and its influences. Thanks to this, his creations, born of his know-how and his love for craftsmanship and his country, have been able to travel and show the general public that Africa isn’t just about wax fabric.