It seems that Turkey is getting into the fashion world in a big way. First it was Istanbul Fashion Week, which received rave reviews on well-respected fashion sites like style.com, Facehunter, and Stylecaster, now they’ve teamed up with the arbiter of new fashion talent: GenArt. Going forth with the ethos “Globally Yours”, Turkish Airlines recently supported GenArt’s inaugural global project, which launched last May and wrapped with the debut of Kenya-based designer Nike Kondakis at LA Fashion Week. As part of this fruitful mash-up, the carrier highlighted its route to Nairobi, Kenya by providing flights for GenArt influencers, media, and philanthropists last Spring, in partnership with the Tribal Chic fashion show at boutique hotel, Tribe Nairobi.
The airline then extended its support for emerging fashion by backing Nike Kondakis at a special presentation at SLS Beverly Hills and GenArt’s legendary Fresh Faces in Fashion Presentation at Los Angeles Fashion Week, October 16 and 17. The event was attended by celebrities, and a host of jet setters celebrating the best in international fashion. Not only is this exciting because a talented designer is being backed by such an illustrious company (which is such a bold name in Turkey’s tourism industry), but also because it presents the prospect of more designers from less-wealthy and under-represented countries being able to take place in this important and career making opportunity.
As for what the airline’s ongoing partnership in this year’s GenArt festivities will be, that could be anything from highly involved to merely lending their name and money to the cause. However, as the Istancool Festival, along with their highly popular design culture has taught us, Turkey is a global tastemaker the artistic community has long underestimated.
In a country that has spent the last two decades struggling with an identity that’s equal parts modern and tradition, we’re very curious to see what kind of role events like this will play in turning cities like Istanbul and Marrakkesh into global fashion destinations.
If you’re curious, we’ve culled some of our favorite images from Instanbul Fashion Week 2012, along with a few gems from the most recent GenArt Fashion presentations: