After I caught wind that not so long ago, Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, was considered the smartest city in Africa, I grew enormously interested in the east African creative scene. I wondered how the youth in Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Somalia were holding their end of the deal concerning creative matters. I also questioned how my peers were handling chronic problems like steep unemployment rates, political instability and the vast number of diseases that plague the African continent.
While caught up in my newly found interest, I became familiar with a formidable, dynamic styling house called KEVO ABBRA.
KEVO ABBRA was founded in 2014 by Kenyan stylist, prop master, set designer and talent scout Kevin Abraham.
His large arsenal of creative ventures has been featured on a number of influential publications, the likes of:
- Okay Africa
- The next Gag
- Design Indaba, to name but a few
Describe your styling in 4 words
My form of styling in four words I would say, Artistic, Classy-Retro, Urban-funk and Afro-futuristic because all my works pronounce such feels.
Elaborate for me where did it all begin, fashion and all that jazz?
My stylist journey all began as a young lad looking up to my father who is a tie and dye fabric artist. I was also more inspired by his vintage style of dressing and I started my own way of dressing too.
Tell me a little about the journey and how your styling evolved to where it is now.
My styling journey has certainly evolved from where I began. I learn new things and new art avenues and so that means my styling has to evolve to fit my new found art avenues. I come up with new trends, new style in arts, and even in fashion. Every year has something new.
What’s your relationship with Countries like Ethiopia?
I would say that my relationship with Ethiopia is based on the fact that Ethiopia has a very fast growing fashion industry.
This means that they explore new talent. Their fashion industry has also embraced me as a creative artist and created room for me in several job settings.
Tell me more about the workshop series you hosted in Ethiopia, what did it entail?
The workshop series in Ethiopia was a collaboration with the upcoming talents in the photography, styling, and modelling industries in the fashion world. We did it spearheaded by Osborne Macharia and I to teach the importance and beauty of teamwork and the importance of having a professional team during assignments.
I can see that things are really getting off the ground, where can I expect to see Kevo Abraham in 10 years?
In ten years time, Kevo Abbra will be a retired fashion stylist, not completely absent in the arts world but very present in his established production warehouse, fashion styling school, a brand line as well.
What’s your opinion on the styling industry in Kenya and the rest of the continent?
The styling industry in Kenya is just starting to see the importance of having a stylist. Gradually this will be a job that will be professionalized just as the rest that have not been acknowledged o much as professions. In Africa the fashion industry is picking up at a fast rate than anyone would have expected, and styling also is gradually being acknowledged because there is credible talent.
2016 is for you a…?
2016 is a productive year for me. To Produce and be productive.
Are you happy with the results of your efforts?
I am highly pleased and content with my journey and accomplishments so far. It makes me even more excited in anticipation of how far I am going.
Any additional words you would like share with the readers?
To add, as a visual artist, I strongly believe that it is time to tell African stories to the global community through an artistic African perspective.