Chanel is on a mission to deepen Demi-Couture tradition in West Africa. Their first step is starting a dialogue with Senegal by bringing the ‘Métiers d’Art’ runway to the heart of Dakar at the former Palais de Justice as part of a three-day cultural program built around creative dialogue, sustainable development and the transmission of savoir-faire. The French Maison showcased its latest 2022/23 Métiers d’art collection in Senegal on December 6, staging its African debut and placing a global spotlight on the capital’s bustling artistic ecosystem.
Chanel brought to the region a monumental first for high fashion, steering off the typical fashion radar to land its runway at Dakur. The brainchild of Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, Chanel’s Métiers d’Art show is an annual celebration of the works of specialist artisans and craftspeople that the house has taken under its wings for decades.
The savoir-faire of its Métiers d’Art collection harmonized with the artistic and cultural energy of the city for a stunning showcase of the brand’s 11 ateliers. A 1970s spirit undulates through the 2022/23 Métiers d’art CHANEL – DAKAR collection. The silhouettes riff on a collection of tight flared trousers matched with tunic tops, column knit dresses, oversized knits and platform shoes. The creations hum with a cornucopia of deep, warm fall colors, intricately woven tweeds and geometric embroideries. Reimagined by Virginie Viard in a creative dialogue with the artisans of CHANEL’s Maisons d’art, the collection stays true to the emblematic codes of the Maison, with camellias, intertwined pearls, abundant buttons and dazzling sequins taking center stage.
Looks that were presented in the Dakar parade included suits in tweed — a Chanel classic, logo-centric denim trousers, a sleeveless sequins jacket, matching trousers with a graphic sweater as well as a floral net jacket under an embellished plastron-tie.
In the lead up to the show and grand public reveal, Chanel is debuting a collection of short films shot by French-Malian filmmaker Ladj Ly and his Kourtrajmé collective, who run a film school in Dakar. Teeming with bold energy, the first two episodes of the four-part documentary series are tantalizing visual amuse-bouche overflowing with creative energy. The episodes offer a peek into Dakur’s flourishing artistic scene, energetically weaving together rehearsals moments with Germaine Acogny’s École des Sables dancers choreographed by Dimitri Chamblas with shots from a whirlwind tour through the Chanel ateliers and the Creation studio as some of the house’s most formidable creative forces work on the final preparations for the collection. The film of the CHANEL – Dakar 2022/23 Métiers d’art show was unveiled on Thursday December 8th on chanel.com.
Alongside the video series, Chanel unveiled the new Métiers d’Art collection via a series of images captured by Senegalese photographer Malick Bodian and Sierra Leone-born, London-based multidisciplinary creative Ibrahim Kamara. Set against the backdrop of the River Seine in Paris, the images breathe life into the collection pieces designed by creative director Virginie Viard, from a floral embroidery jacket by Montex entirely embellished in beads and painted lace trousers and an oversized sweatshirt adorned in multicolor camellias by flower-maker Lemarié Lesage tweed to a pleated big skirt worn with a tweed jacket in shades of green by Lognon.
IMAGES: Copyright CHANEL