Lebanon’s Hussein Bazaza fuses storytelling, fashion design

Hussein Bazaza is known for his edgy, whimsical take on fashion. (Getty)
Updated 09 October 2019

Lebanon’s Hussein Bazaza fuses storytelling, fashion design

BEIRUT: Lebanese fashion designer Hussein Bazaza is known for his edgy, whimsical take on fashion and Arab News caught up with rising star before he sends a clutch of models down the runway at Arab Fashion Week in Dubai on Friday.

The designer graduated from ESMOD Beirut in 2011 and kickstarted his career by interning with iconic Lebanese fashion house Maison Rabih Kayrouz in Paris, before he joined Elie Saab as a junior designer.

Bazaza was also selected to be part of the Starch Foundation in Beirut, a non-profit organization founded by designers Kayrouz and Tala Hajjar that helps launch emerging Lebanese designers. “(It) opened a big door for me. I started selling my pieces to actual customers in the Starch Boutique,” Bazaza told Arab News.

At the tender age of 23, Bazaza opened his first showroom and atelier in Beirut.

“In 2014, I created my professional brand and I was part of Fashion Forward Dubai, where I started showing my collections. The Arab World started to know more about my brand and (about) me as a designer,” Bazaza said.

Bazaza’s label has a unique take on fashion, he believes. “I have a special way in mixing colors, mixing fabrics and textures together. I love to combine between haute-couture and ready-to-wear.”

The designer’s love for haute-couture fashion inspired him to create mash ups of glamorous red-carpet styles and more effortless looks. “I did not know people would love this combination. People started referring to this style as Hussein Bazaza’s style so that was something I am proud of,” he said of his sporty chic aesthetic.

Before studying fashion design, Bazaza wanted to major in film making and it is why the designer loves creating stories with his pieces. “My main inspiration is not fashion, it’s the story I create, the character I create to dress up in this collection that I’m making every season,” he explained.

This desire to tell a story first came to the fore in his Fall/Winter 2018 collection, “Lilly.”

“‘Lilly’ was like a big story and people were so involved with this story. We live in a… digital world with social media and everything and I wanted to show people that we still have feelings, emotions and I wanted to create a story about this.”

Dubai Culture Authority, Art Dubai Group launch #DubaiIDEATHON to combat pandemic’s impact on arts sector

The pandemic is affecting the local arts and culture sector in the UAE. (Shutterstock)
Updated 31 March 2020

Dubai Culture Authority, Art Dubai Group launch #DubaiIDEATHON to combat pandemic’s impact on arts sector

DUBAI: The UAE’s cultural sector is among the many industries being affected by the coronavirus pandemic spreading throughout the globe. In addition to the threat to public health, the economic and social disruption brought on by the infectious disease threatens the long-term livelihoods and wellbeing of the hundreds of SMEs and freelancers that make up a vast portion of the country’s cultural and creative sectors.

With this in mind, the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority teamed up with the Art Dubai Group, to launch #DubaiIDEATHON, a call for collective action to ideate possible solutions to support the cultural industries in response to the coronavirus crisis.

How it works is, after reading the open call, the public is invited to submit their ideas to address challenges relating to key issues such as financial stability and employee protection, propose solutions to tackle these challenges and explore new possibilities via an online workshops.

Six ideation sessions with the participants of the Open Call will be organized based on the common challenges, and facilitated by specialized design-thinking experts, concluding in ready-to-implement proposals that will be shared with relevant public, private and non-profit stakeholders. Finally, proposed solutions will be put to industry experts to help devise implementation strategies.

Organizers have identified six challenges for participants to respond to: What solutions could be created to protect jobs and employees during crisis?; How can the creative community self-organize? And what kind of public-private collaborations can we explore?; How can companies start reducing their fixed costs?; How can we improve company-client relationships and collaborations?; How can we maintain the flow of the supply chains? And, finally, are businesses able to generate revenue from digital shifts?

The Dubai Ideathon, which was facilitated by design agency Atolye’s Onat Vural and Leen Sadder, opens for receiving ideas on April 2.