De­signer fo­cus Meet Not Good Enough’s Le­bo­gang Mok­goko

Meet Le­bo­gang Mok­goko, the Pre­to­ria-based pho­tog­ra­pher turned de­signer and cre­ative di­rec­tor of his own brand Not Good Enough, a de­sign and con­sult­ing com­pany that spe­cialises in con­tem­po­rary ap­parel and home de­signs. Here, he talks the fu­ture of African

Glamour (South Africa) - - CONTENTS -

Glam­our: What made you want to ven­ture into the in­dus­try?

Le­bo­gang Mok­goko: I think, in essence, I’m in love with the art of sto­ry­telling and the amount of free­dom the in­dus­try gives you to cre­ate works of art that other in­di­vid­u­als can re­late to and find ap­pre­ci­a­tion for. G: Have you al­ways had a pas­sion for de­sign? LM: For as long as I can re­mem­ber, I’ve al­ways been a vis­ual per­son; tak­ing a par­tic­u­lar in­ter­est in how some­thing looked. It was only when I at­tended Pro Arte Alphen Park, a high school in Pre­to­ria that specif­i­cally fo­cuses on the arts, that I started to get into art and fash­ion, and study­ing the likes of Martin Margiela, Alexan­der Mcqueen, Yo­hji Ya­mamoto and Hedi Sli­mane. Learn­ing about th­ese ‘gods’ of the in­dus­try in­spired me to cre­ate and share sto­ries of my own so that an­other kid with a sim­i­lar back­ground and up­bring­ing could get in­spi­ra­tion and cre­ate their own vi­sions, too.

G: What came first, de­sign or pho­tog­ra­phy?

LM: I can’t pic­ture one with­out the other, they work hand-in-hand. I grew up with Hedi Sli­mane (who is both a fash­ion pho­tog­ra­pher and de­signer) as an in­flu­ence, so that dis­ci­pline was so in­stilled in me that when I got to LISOF, I had to fight to do both medi­ums at the same time be­cause the cur­ricu­lum wasn’t set up in a way to do both. Yes, de­sign­ing is the process of mak­ing some­thing, but I also be­lieve it’s a vis­ual thing. You have to have an un­der­stand­ing of both worlds in or­der for your work to reach a cer­tain level of qual­ity. G: What is your aes­thetic when it comes to cap­tur­ing an image? LM: I don’t cap­ture mo­ments, I cre­ate them. I want to pro­voke an emo­tion, good or bad. In or­der to do that, I’ll play around with colour, tex­ture and push­ing gen­der-neu­tral ideas. G: How do you feel about global fash­ion in 2018? LM: Fash­ion is in a weird space right now. There’s an un­spo­ken ‘war’ be­tween fast fash­ion and the art of fash­ion. It has re­ally be­come more about the hype than the ac­tual clothes, which I find very sad. G: What are your thoughts on African fash­ion of the past while mov­ing for­ward into the fu­ture? LM: It’s an ex­cit­ing time for African fash­ion be­cause of all the doors that are open­ing up for African brands. In the past, we were still search­ing for our voices and cre­at­ing col­lec­tions based on what oth­ers as­sumed was ‘African’. Now, we’re re­ally ques­tion­ing the African iden­tity and are slowly be­gin­ning to con­trol the nar­ra­tive. G: In this com­pet­i­tive in­dus­try, how are you mak­ing your mark? LM: By cre­at­ing gar­ments that speak to a time be­yond now, not those fol­low­ing a trend.

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