William Okpo's runway show during Gen Art's "Fresh Faces" showcase in September.
For years, Gen Art was one of the most interesting showcases to watch during New York Fashion Week and beyond, highlighting up-and-coming talent worth watching. Designers like Zac Posen, Phillip Lim, and Rodarte all got a lift from the organization at one point in their careers. In 2010, however, Gen Art ceased all operations and essentially collapsed -- fueling speculation on poor business-planning and, even worse, sowing frustration among young talent about the financial fall-out.
By 2011, it seemed Gen Art was getting back on its feet, reprising its annual Fresh Faces in Fashion show this past September. Now, according to WWD, the organization is making a big return to the New York Fashion Week calendar with a "New Garde Fashion Show," set for February 9 at Exit Art.
"New Garde" will feature three designers as part of the showcase: William Okpo, a label helmed by Darlene and Lizzy Okpo that was featured in the Fresh Faces show in September; Samantha Pleet, who's actually been on the indie scene for some time; and a genuine newcomer in Gemma Kahng, who just launched her own collection.
Those who have watched the organization's finances with some trepidation will be pleased to know that, according to WWD, the show has an official sponsor in Crest 3D White. Here's hoping this is all a sign that Gen Art is back for good, and back to doing what it once did so well.