DonnaKaran Spring 2012 Campaign In Jakmel

“Bringing awareness to Haiti has become a personal passion. For Spring/Summer, it was also my creative inspiration, bringing my two worlds together. This campaign, shot in Jacmel, infuses the vibrant spirit of Haiti into a sexy New York sophistication. The clothes come alive set against the textured and artisan culture and street life that inspired them. The shoot was the most amazing experience. I enlisted my friend the photographer Russell James, who in addition to being the creator of Nomad Two Worlds exhibits, travels with me to Haiti on behalf of The Clinton Global Initiative. Adriana Lima was the model, and I instantly fell in love with her. You only need look at the photos and see how she captures the sultry sensuality of the clothes in the various colorful settings. Many of the “extras” are Haitian artists and friends, including Philippe Dodard, whose work inspired the tribal palette and stroke-like prints we used in the clothes. I wanted you to see Haiti the way I do, as a place of hope and creativity. Of course, shooting in Haiti isn’t like shooting in New York, so I enlisted my friend filmmaker David Belle, who is a longtime resident of Jacmel and also the founder of Cine Institute Haiti’s only film school. David smoothed the way, enlisting 70 locals to help us in all various positions, from production and stylists, to extras, drivers and caterers. The Hotel Florita, a charming and remarkably preserved 19th century house, was our base of operation and its interiors are featured in many of the photos. I only wish the whole experience was captured on film because it was creative, spontaneous and fun, as well as a postcard to Haiti and all the artisans I’ve come to know, work with and love. We’ve given each photo a detailed caption to give you a behind-the-scenes flavor of the shoot. I invite you to experience the seduction, art body and soul.” Donna Karan