FEBRUARY 3, 2023
From Dakar to the World: What does being celebrated in Pharrell Williams’s i-D Film represent for me
I just landed in Senegal in early December 2022 and got this text message. Little did I know it would lead to a documentary hosted by Pharrell Williams and delving into the artists pushing Dakar’s creative scene forward!
We often get press and film requests. But this one felt very special. Being interviewed and recognized in Senegal means so much to me because that is where everything started. I went to my mom right away and said: ‘Mom we’re legit, i-D is sending us a big film crew next week, I can’t wait to tell them everything we do’. She laughed and said: ‘I love how excited you always are about everything’!
What a way to kick off Black History Month! @i_d just released the short documentary film and it’s pure fire!
If you truly believe in something, and you truly care about it, you can do it. Especially being African, being Black, being Muslim, I mean I have every single title that makes me a failure by default in society if I look at how we are categorized. Yet, I’m gonna make it. And I think that’s the legacy I want to leave. That those titles don’t really stop you… but those different facets of your identity can really enrich whatever you make out of it. And it’s still true to me, a proud senegalese woman, who grew up here in Dakar, who lives in Silicon Valley, who can use math and algorithms to create clothes, made by artisans here (in Dakar) that are sold around the world, like it’s a story that just makes no sense at all if you put it together, but it actually does. And that’s the kind of stories I want to tell!
- Diarra Bousso
A Full Circle Moment from 10 Year Ago
I started working on Diarrablu exactly 10 years ago, in February 2013. That’s when I quit my job on Wall Street, returned to Senegal and started drawing and making dressing on the roof of our family home. We had one artisan come everyday and I was the fit model. My mom would help me with design because she is so talented and my sisters would wear the pieces and take photos. My dad was super excited to finally see me doing something I love and everyday was a new adventure in our home studio. When these features come out, it’s not just about me. It’s a happy dance for my family, my community and everyone who was part of this journey in the last 10 years.
@i_d filmed both local and global talent who gathered in the city for the Chanel show in early December to showcase Senegalese crafstmanship and culture in the current social landscape and how it is influencing the next generation of fashion creativesI feel so grateful to be in this film alongside these talented creatives: