Ciara rocks Arab labels at American Music Awards

Ciara showed off a daring look by Lebanese designer Georges Hobeika. Getty Images
Updated 25 November 2019

Ciara rocks Arab labels at American Music Awards

  • Ciara displayed a striking lineup of show-stopping looks from Middle Eastern designers
  • However, the Grammy award-winning singer wasn’t the only star to seek out regional talent at the ceremony

DUBAI: One of the biggest questions ahead of the 2019 American Music Awards, which kicked off on Sunday in Los Angeles, was: How many outfits can the evening’s host Ciara pull off?  Turns out, the answer is nine. And among the lineup of glamorous, show-stopping ensembles were a number of designs from Arab labels.

First, she hit the red carpet in an oversized cobalt-colored plisse pantsuit from Balmain accessorized with matching turquoise jewelry from Los Angeles-based, Egyptian designer Jacquie Aiche, which set the tone for the rest of the head-turning looks that followed.

Following her opening performance of her new single “Melanin” — she opted for a custom Bryan Hearns creation — the mother-of-two slipped into a leopard-printed mini dress from Saudi couturier Ashi Studio for her third look. The glamorous look featured billowing sleeves and a long train and she accessorized it with a bold, diamond choker.




For her fourth look, Ciara chose an orange, crystal-embellished jumpsuit from Beirut-based label Georges Hobeika. Getty Images

 She followed up the striking ensemble with a design from another Arab couture house. For her fourth look, the “Goodies” singer chose an orange, crystal-embellished jumpsuit from Beirut-based label Georges Hobeika.  The long-sleeved ensemble boasted a high neck and an oversized bow that trailed on the floor. She completed the look with a pair of metallic sandals.

The 34-year-old also rocked designs from Alessandra Rich, Azzaro and Versace. She closed out the celebrity-filled event in a sheer, black Mugler design.

 The Grammy award-winning singer wasn’t the only star to seek out regional talent at the 47th edition of the annual awards ceremony.




American singer Toni Braxton wore not one, but two Arab designs. AFP

Singing legend Toni Braxton, who was honored at the event, wore  a feathered off-the-shoulder gown by Lebanese label Labourjoisie before switching into an ethereal white tulle gown by Kuwaiti designer Yousef Al-Jasmi for her nostalgic rendition of "Un-Break My Heart".

Other celebrities to step out on the red carpet wearing Arab labels include Heidi Klum, who turned to Bahraini label Monsoori for the occasion.

Elsewhere, Regina King arrived on the red carpet wearing a long, black cut-out Ashi Studio gown and Lauren Jauregui turned heads wearing a belted, snake skin design from LA-based, Syrian-Venezuelan label Usama Ishtay.

Meanwhile, American singer Paula Abdul stunned in a single-shoulder, crystal-embellished dress with a high slit from Lebanese label Charbel Zoe. 


What We Are Reading Today: Race Is About Politics Jean-Frederic Schaub

Updated 21 January 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Race Is About Politics Jean-Frederic Schaub

  • Schaub argues that to understand racism we must look at historical episodes of collective discrimination

Racial divisions have returned to the forefront of politics in the US and European societies, making it more important than ever to understand race and racism. 

But do we? In this original and provocative book, acclaimed historian Jean-Frédéric Schaub shows that we don’t— and that we need to rethink the widespread assumption that racism is essentially a modern form of discrimination based on skin color and other visible differences.

On the contrary, Schaub argues that to understand racism we must look at historical episodes of collective discrimination. Built around notions of identity and otherness, race is above all a political tool that must be understood in the context of its historical origins.

Although scholars agree that races don’t exist, they disagree about when these ideologies emerged. Drawing on historical research from the early modern period to today, Schaub makes the case that the key turning point in the political history of race in the West occurred not with the Atlantic slave trade and American slavery, as many historians have argued, but much earlier, in 15th-century Spain and Portugal, with the racialization of Christians of Jewish and Muslim origin.