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Seoul Fashion Week appoints first director

15-year-old event’s debut director plans to make SFW Asia’s best fashion week

Seoul Fashion Week announced Wednesday that it had appointed veteran fashion designer Jung Ku-ho as its first director.

Jung will oversee Korea’s biggest fashion event for a two-year term, orchestrating and revamping fashion shows and related programs.

“I will try my best to make SFW Asia’s representative fashion week that leads the fashion trends of Asia. If anyone wants to know about Asian fashion, they will have to come to the SFW,” Jung told The Korea Herald before the appointment ceremony in Seoul on Wednesday.

Jung is the first director of SFW in its 15 years of history. It has been largely run by separate associations of designers with financial and logistics support from the Seoul Metropolitan Government. 

Lee Keun (left), CEO of Seoul Design Foundation, and Jung Ku-ho, director of Seoul Fashion Week, pose at the appointment ceremony in Dongdaemun, Seoul. (SFW)
Lee Keun (left), CEO of Seoul Design Foundation, and Jung Ku-ho, director of Seoul Fashion Week, pose at the appointment ceremony in Dongdaemun, Seoul. (SFW)

Jung was creative director of the eponymous brand Kuho under Cheil Industries, an affiliate of Samsung Group until 2013, when he left the apparel-maker. After his departure, he led collaborative projects with the National Dance Company of Korea in several dance pieces. He has been offering design consulting to major Korean and foreign brands.

“I believe, with the appointment of Jung as the SFW director, the event will become a global fashion event,” said Lee Keun, CEO of Seoul Design Foundation, an affiliate of the Seoul Metropolitan Government that oversees the Seoul Fashion Week and its venue, Dongdaemun Design Plaza.

The SFW has been criticized for failing to bridge designers, foreign buyers and press effectively, which was considered as a major factor that has left Korea’s largest fashion showcase to remain a local event enjoyed by local designers and audiences.

“I’ve felt regretful over the lack of credit given to SFW despite its 15 years of history,” said Jung.

Jung has three approaches in mind to improving Seoul Fashion Week.

He plans to invite respected foreign buyers and press to attract global publicity. To draw actual deals between designers and overseas buyers, he plans to make the fashion fair, held alongside the fashion shows, more professional. Another plan is to set up a fashion archive, a channel through which anyone can gain information on Korean designers and fashion.

In the long run, Jung envisions the SFW as the trend forecaster of Asia fashion.

“A fashion week that plays the role of a trend forecaster can become a mainstream global fashion event. It is a hard job to make the SFW a global fashion event, but I believe it can be a creative hub of Asia fashion,” said Jung.

With less six months left before the spring and summer collections for 2016, Jung plans to facilitate networks among buyers, designers and press at the coming SFW in October.

By Lee Woo-young  (
Korea Herald Youtube