Casablanca took a bold step forward during Paris Fashion Week presenting their Fall/Winter 2023 collection, For The Peace. Transcending the realm of clothing, the collection became a vessel for a powerful narrative that must be shared. Born out of a profound personal experience in Damascus, Casablanca’s AW23 collection sheds light on the shadows to celebrate the beauty, resilience, and love that persist even in the face of conflict. Creative director Charaf Tajer’s journey to create For The Peace began with a transformative visit to Syria, where he encountered the vibrant and defiant spirit among the Syrian people. He saw not just existence, but life, love, and celebration in the midst of misfortune. It was a story that needed to be told, not only from the perspective of darkness but also from the perspective of light, beauty, and art. And hence, the For The Peace collection came to live.
The campaign for Casablanca’s F/W 23 collection is titled Love Against War, shot in Beirut, it carries forward the narrative that inspired the collection. The campaign celebrates humanity's courage and kindness in the face of conflict. In times of war, destruction, and despair, it's easy to overlook the untold stories of resilience, compassion, and love that persist, transcending the barriers imposed by violence. The imagery hence reflects this paradox, showcasing a passion for beauty, love, and the simple right to live, triumphing against all odds.
The heart of the campaign narrative is intertwined with the powerful story that initially inspired the collection. Told by Maya Chantout, art director and friend of Charaf Tajer, it's a story of ordinary young people in Syria who risk everything to find joy amidst the fear of bombardment. For them, partying becomes an act of courage, defiance, and resistance. Love Against War seeks to illuminate these largely untold stories, where beauty and devastation coexist in a precarious dance of life.
Maya Chantout, deeply moved by her experiences, shares her perspective: "In 2012, I had to leave my beloved Syria because of the war. It was one of the hardest things I've ever done. I consider myself lucky, but I can't shake off the guilt of surviving. My grandparents, they never wanted to leave, my grandfather stayed for his land and his olive trees and my grandmother stayed for him. Their humanity inspires me every day, how they kept living, loving, and moving forward, even in the darkest times. They taught me the power of hope and the importance of cherishing life even in the darkest of times.”
Charaf Tajer, the Founder and Creative Director of Casablanca, echoes the sentiment: "With this campaign, it is important for us to show the paradox of finding love and beauty, where there is pain and destruction. It’s easy to see the world in black and white. Good or evil. Happiness or pain. War or peace. But in reality, we are surrounded by nuance, colors, and shades.”
In For The Peace and Love Against War, Casablanca doesn't just present a collection; it unveils a tribute to the indomitable human spirit, an ode to resilience, and an invitation to embrace the nuanced beauty that exists amidst the chaos of our world. This collection serves as a poignant reminder that, even in the darkest of times, the power of hope and love can shine through, painting a picture of a more compassionate and united future.
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