Nigeria singer, Temilade Openiyi popularly known as Tems has reacted to the controversy trailing her choice of fashion for the 2023 Oscar Awards.
Tems was dressed in a custom white sculptural gown by Ukrainian brand, Lever Couture’s AW22, Leleka Couture collection. The gown which features a large headpiece drew backlash for obstructing the view of fellow audience members at the event.
Speaking with Harper’s Bazzar, Tems in a pre-Oscars interview gave behind-the-scenes details on the controversial gown.
According to the Grammys award winner, she decided to “go all out” and “make the most” of her first Oscars attendance.
“Two years ago, I would’ve said no to this dress,” she said. “But it’s my first Oscars — I am going to go all out. I really wanted to make the most of the day. The dress is also my way of celebrating my work and the people around me, celebrating my country, and celebrating the people that are rooting for me. This dress says ‘Yes, yes, I am here!’”
Speaking on her recent groundbreaking achievements on the international music scene, the ‘Crazy Tings’ singer said this was just the beginning for her. Tems mentioned that her collaboration with musical giants like Beyonce and Rihanna were indications she was on the “right path”.
“If the biggest women in the world love my work to such an extent that they are working with me, then that must say something. My work is actually reaching places, it’s making some type of impact.
“And that is insane! I really am just trying to keep my feet on the ground and continue running and doing things that are a hundred per cent authentic to me. Evolving, learning, growing. It’s just the beginning for me,” she said.
With her collaboration with singer Rihanna; music producer, Ludwig Göransson; and Black Panther’s director, Ryan Coogler, for the movie’s soundtrack, ‘Lift Me Up’, Tems was nominated for Best Original Song at this year’s Oscars
The category was however won by Kaala Bhairava and Rahul Sipligunj for ‘Naatu Naatu’.