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Nigerian Designer Mowalola Ogunlesi is One of Six Designers Chosen to Style Barbie

British Vogue has commissioned six designers to dress the iconic doll in their own signature styles.

Nigerian designer, Mowalola Ogunlesi, is internationally renowned with an impressive resumé to prove it. From styling Solange Knowles for her Daze Magazine cover, Skepta's 2018 "Pure Water" music video, Nike's popular World Cup kit (which was recently relaunched this year) to Grammy award-winning rapper, Drake, sporting one of her custom jackets in the past, Ogunlesi is certainly a trailblazer in the industry. More recently, British Vogue has commissioned Ogunlesi and five other designers to dress the iconic Barbie doll in their own signature styles.


There is scarcely a child who didn't grow up having a Barbie doll or at the very least, wasn't pining for one. It's been sixty years since the doll was first released and to commemorate the global impact it's had as well as its evolution over the years, British Vogue has enlisted the help of six young designers, including London-based designer Ogunlesi, to celebrate the diversity of the doll range.

Describing her signature design for Barbie, Ogunlesi said, "Mine is a world where everyone is free in terms of what they wear, in terms of how they think, and my women aren't threatened by anyone—they are taking back their power." She added that, "She [Barbie] is a Mowalola superhero. [She's] strong, captivating and ready to have a really good time. I want to be wherever she's going."

Ogunlesi's Barbie design, a neon green tie-dye ensemble, is a part of her SS20 collection.

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The 5 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Fireboy DML, Juls, Adekunle Gold and more.

Every week, we highlight the top releases through our best music of the week column.

Here's our round up of the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks, which you can also check out in our Songs You Need to Hear This Week playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

Follow our SONGS YOU NEED TO HEAR THIS WEEK playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

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Film
Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage via Getty.

Michaela Coel Joins the 'Black Panther' Sequel Cast

The upcoming film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, is shaping up.

The sequel to the Oscar-winning Black Panther is only due to debut in July of 2022, but the production is well on its way.

The latest news out of the camp is that Michaela Coel, of I May Destroy You and Chewing Gum fame, has officially joined the cast of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Her character details are still under wraps but according to Variety, Coel has already joined director Ryan Coogler at Atlanta's Pinewood Studios, where production started in late June.

Coel joins original cast members Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright, Daniel Kaluuya, Winston Duke, Lupita Nyong'o, Florence Kasumba, and Angela Bassett all reprising their roles. Following the tragic passing of Chadwick Boseman, Marvel reportedly chose not to recast the role of T'Challa.

Read: How Michaela Coel's 'I May Destroy You' Makes Space For Black Creators

"It's clearly very emotional without Chad," Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige mentions. "But everyone is also very excited to bring the world of Wakanda back to the public and back to the fans. We're going to do it in a way that would make Chad proud."

Michaela Coel's highly-lauded 2020 series I May Destroy You — which she wrote, directed, produced and stared in — received four Emmy nominations.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is scheduled for wide release on July 8, 2022.

Meet Duro Arts, the Man Behind Your Favorite Afrobeats Album Covers

We talk to the Lagos-based digital artist about his work with Olamide, Phyno, Falz and more.

Duro Arts has found himself illustrating the cover artwork for a new wave of Nigerian musicians. Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Oluwadurotimi Bolaji Idowu started digital art in 2010, at a time where afrobeats music was still grasping its feet. Now, 11 years later, he has made covers for heavyweight hitmakers like Peruzzi, Phyno, Olamide, Zlatan, Oxlade, and Davido.

We caught up with Duro Arts on a Sunday afternoon over Zoom. He took the call from Accra, Ghana, where he's currently working. We talked about his journey as a digital artist, his portfolio, creative process, and the changes he'd like to see in the creative industry.

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Series Producer Bonga Percy Vilakazi Is Big On Telling Progressive Stories

The award-winning South African writer and producer cut his teeth in the TV industry washing and drying make-up sponges. Today, he's responsible for entertaining millions of soapie lovers on the African continent.