Yaa Addae & Akua Kwakwa


Transcription of the conversation available here.

Episode Three

In the latest episode of The Decorating Dissidence Podcast, Ghanaian-British curator, writer, and educator Yaa Addae of Decolonize the Art World interviews Akua Kwakwa, co-host of the podcast Off the Rack produced by brainwash media. Their conversation centres around luxury, particularly how contemporary African labels are re-defining what luxury means, and fashion as a medium for creating new worlds. Yaa and Akua discuss the importance of fashion and clothes, comparing their experiences of living in the U.S/UK to Ghana, first memories of dressing themselves, brands you should pay attention to, and how diversity in fashion can give more agency, access and glamour to those who fashion has previously excluded.

“The way fashion will help us to create new worlds is by helping us to create communities…I think people will start looking more at brands that they feel like cater to their communities and within their communities.”

Selly Raby Kane is a clothing line created in 2008 by Senegalese designer Selly Raby, mentioned in the podcast episode.

Yaa Addae is a Ghanaian-British curator, writer, and teaching artist. The emancipatory potential of play is central to their practice, as is dreamwork.Currently based between London and Accra, Yaa is a culture staff writer at AMAKA  and manages a digital studio, A-kra, which offers an online art history platform (Decolonize The Art World) and virtual residency program(The Imaginarium). They have spoken at Southbank Centre,Nubuke Foundation, The Barbican and lead workshops with Autograph ABP, The Church of Black Feminist Thought, The Library of Africa and The African Diaspora and Rumpus Room.

Akua is a creative in the fashion industry, working and living in New York City. She grew up between Ghana, South Africa, Jamaica and the USA and now calls Accra home. Her favorite color is purple (though she is unsure what that really means) and if she could, she would get paid to read books for a living. She has always been enamored of fashion and did her Bachelor’s degree in Fashion Management, with a concentration in Communications. She co-hosts a podcast with a friend of hers about fashion, and pop culture, and will talk about anything fashion-related given the opportunity. 

Make sure to follow us on Instagram @decoratingdissidence and Twitter @decodissidence for new episodes every other Tuesday.

This Podcast series was produced by Decorating Dissidence with support from Queen Mary University of London Centre for Public Engagement. Leo Garbutt is our sound editor and music producer.