2017 LVMH Prize Shortlist Includes More Menswear Than Womenswear Designers

Streetwear is also strongly represented.
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Streetwear is also strongly represented.
The 21 LVMH Prize finalists. Photo: courtesy of LVMH

The 21 LVMH Prize finalists. Photo: courtesy of LVMH

For the fourth year of LVMH's annual Prize for Young Fashion Designers, the French luxury group had to narrow down its largest pool of applicants yet: more than 1,200 candidates from 90 countries. That resulted in a diverse group of 21 semifinalists, announced Thursday morning, from Australia, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Korea, New-Zealand, Russia, Spain, Taiwan, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States, including many designers who were born somewhere other than where they're based, or who show in a country other than the one in which they live.

Also of note: This season's pool is menswear-heavy — perhaps unsurprising given that last year's winner is a menswear designer — and many of them are streetwear-influenced — also perhaps unsurprising given the prominence of streetwear in today's market. There are 10 menswear designers, nine womenswear designers and two who design both. "Boldness in innovation is the keyword for these 21 young designers," said LVMH's Delphine Arnault, who supervises the selection committee, in a statement. "As the leader of the fashion industry, it is the mission of the LVMH group to discover and help young talents to develop their uniqueness." These talents are competing for 300,000 euros, or $320,000 at current exchange, plus a year of mentoring from LVMH. The jury includes LVMH's top designers such as Maria Grazia Chiuri (a new participant), Nicolas Ghesquiere, Marc Jacobs, Karl Lagerfeld, Pheobe Philo and Riccardo Tisci (even though he's no longer a part of LVMH).

Five designers will represent the U.S. in what is essentially the Olympics of luxury fashion: Greg Rosborough of Abasi Rosborough, Yoon Ahn of Ambush (who is based in Tokyo but shows in New York), Maria Kazakova of Jahnkoy, Katherine Mavridis and Alejandro Gomez Palomo of Palomo Spain (who is based in Cordoba but shows in New York). The latter made a particularly big splash during the most recent New York Fashion Week: Men's.

Other buzzy brands among the finalists include Maggie Marilyn, Molly Goddard, Dilara Findikoglu and Martine Rose; but even those less familiar names are ones to watch. Past winners — of either the top prize or include Wales Bonner, Marques'Almeida and Jacquemus. And as many of the 2016 semifinalists expressed, the exposure and mentoring that comes with being a part of the Prize is nearly as beneficial as winning. 

Read on for all the finalists, who will present in Paris during Fashion Week and be narrowed down to eight on March 2. A winner will be named June 16.

Abasi Rosborough by Greg Rosborough (American designer based in New York). Menswear, showing in New York.

Ambush by Yoon Ahn (American designer based in Tokyo). Unisex collections, showing in New York.

Angus Chiang by Angus Chiang (Taiwanese designer based in Taiwan). Menswear, showing in Tokyo.

Atlein by Antonin Tron (French designer based in Paris). Womenswear, showing in Paris.

Blindness by JiSun Park (Korean designer based in Seoul). Menswear, showing in Paris.

Cecilie Bahnsen by Cecilie Rosted Bahnsen (Danish designer based in Copenhagen). Womenswear, showing in Copenhagen.

Charles Jeffrey Loverboy by Charles Jeffrey (British designer based in London). Menswear, showing in London.

Daniel W. Fletcher by Daniel Fletcher (British designer based in London). Menswear, showing in London.

Dilara Findikoglu by Dilara Findikoglu (Turkish designer based in London). Womenswear, showing in London.

GMBH by Serhat Isik (German collective based in Berlin). Unisex collections, showing in Berlin.

Jahnkoy by Maria Kazakova (Russian designer based in New York). Menswear, showing in New York.

Katherine Mavridis by Katherine Mavridis (Australian designer based in New York). Womenswear, showing in New York.

Kozaburo by Kozaburo Akasaka (Japanese designer based in Tokyo). Menswear, showing in Tokyo.

Maggie Marilyn by Maggie Hewitt (New Zealand designer based in Auckland). Womenswear, showing in Paris.

Marine Serre by Marine Serre (French designer based in Paris). Womenswear, showing in Paris.

Martine Rose Studios Limited by Martine Rose (British designer based in London). Menswear, showing in London.

Molly Goddard by Molly Goddard (British designer based in London). Womenswear, showing in London.

Nabil Nayal by Nabil el Nayal (British designer based in London). Womenswear, showing in London.

Palomo Spain by Alejandro Gomez Palomo (Spanish designer based in Cordoba). Menswear, showing in New York.

Richard Malone by Richard Malone (Irish designer based in London). Womenswear, showing in London.

Sulvam by Teppei Fujita (Japanese designer based in Tokyo). Menswear, showing in Tokyo.

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