Six months after the untimely passing of Off-White’s founder Virgil Abloh, the brand announced Ibrahim Kamara as its art and image director. Now, just three months later, Morocco is the setting his debut, with men and women’s RTW collections for Off-White FW/22 merging gloriously with the city of Chefchaouen, also known as the Blue Pearl.
The FW/22 campaign was shot by Brazilian photographer Rafael Pavarotti and features the final collection designed by Abloh before his passing. The choice of location for Kamara’s first campaign as head of art and imagery at Off-White is more than a coincidence. It is intentional, and ambitious and marks the beginning of his era at the Maison.
Off-White’s FW/22 collection is everything we had come to expect from Virgil Abloh. Filled with stellar looks in which tapestry informs bags, pants and bomber jackets. Each of these items represents the brand’s skiwear theme that is crafted from a trio of performance-focused materials that give the clothing both form and function. In keeping with his streetwear aesthetic, Abloh lined the collection with skateboarding pieces in the form of workwear – the blue shirt and baggy black pants. All are designed in the brand’s vision of tailoring.
The collection extends to include soft flannel wool oatmeal ensembles that are made up of rollneck sweaters and overcoats, pleated skirts and boxy pants, while sporty tank tops, white tees and an array of sunglasses are infiltrated with the brand’s loud graphic approach. The collection is finished off with miniskirts, cropped bombers and heeled boots for women.
Why The Blue City?
The idea to shoot the collection in Morocco’s blue city Chefchaouen is an intentional move by Kamara. The electric shade of blue has been a part of Off-White’s identity for such a long time. The idea was to drive and further highlight the tone that is meant to perpetuate calm and reassurance. “The city of Chefchaouen was key as a deeply historical old town with a very surreal point of view and notoriety. It began to paint itself blue as an omen to bring water to the area; it’s about nourishment, growth, survival and development,” the collections notes explained. “The initiative and ambition of the local culture to paint the built environment blue are profound. Broad brush strokes of varying shades of blue, ultramarine and indigo refrigerate this exceptionally hot city.”
IB Kamara’s Vision
Kamara has long been an admirer of Abloh’s work (haven’t we all?). Given Abloh’s legacy, Kamara had found the perfect place in Chefchaouen to continue Off-White’s story. What Kamara does from here remains to be seen, but he certainly looks set to follow in Abloh’s footsteps and promote the underrepresented. “Making a successful luxury brand in nine years is genius… It’s a feat that I admire and hope to continue building upon with a rich legacy. [Virgil] revolutionsed streetwear and luxury that crosses generations and decades,” he said. “He showed the world that the underrepresented, the underdogs and Black people, in particular, have brilliant minds and can push and compete equally in the establishment. He inspired hope and brought about change. Virgil Abloh was one of the freest-thinking black men of our time.”
The collection is now available in Off-White stores and online here