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Thebe Magusu
Faculty PressPhotography Paul Samuels

South African designer Thebe Magugu takes home the 2019 LVMH Prize

Magugu has been awarded €300,000 after winning the prestigious LVMH Young Fashion Designer award

Thebe Magugu has been announced the winner of the LVMH prize for Young Fashion Designer. Taking place at a ceremony at the Louis Vuitton Foundation in Paris this afternoon, Magugu was announced the winner of the coveted award by Swedish actress Alicia Vikander. The South African designer beat some 1,700 applicants from over 100 different countries. 

Decided by a jury made up of the likes of Marc Jacobs, Nicolas Ghesquière, Jonathon Anderson, and Maria Grazia Chiuri, the Johannesburg-based designer wins €300,000 in prize money and a one-year mentorship program with the LVMH team.

Born and raised in South Africa, Magugu creates unique, boundary-pushing women's clothing. His latest collections, Gender Studies and Home Economics, explore the ‘condition of the female force in South Africa’. Dedicating his time spotlighting SA talent, Magugu also created a zine, Faculty Press, earlier this year. “I think there needs to be documentation about what South African youth culture is up to now more than ever,” he told Dazed in an interview. “I think it’s up to us to do projects and zines that continue to document our culture because so many things are closing down that used to.”

This was the first edition of the prize since the passing of Karl Lagerfeld. Last month, LVMH renamed their Special Prize in honour of the legendary designer, with the 2019 award given to Hed Mayner. 

Previous winners of the LVMH Prize include Marine Serre, Grace Wales Bonner, founder of London-based menswear label Wales Bonner, and Marques' Almeida.