Une Femme en Colère Kimabaya, Milia Maroun in collaboration with Lamia Ziade
In a nod to the world’s hottest storytelling platform – Pecha Kucha or “show and tell” – Selections has asked a
number of artists and designers to talk about a specific project through imagery and an economy of words. The
result is a simple yet engaging and visually captivating tale that sheds light upon the work whilst providing
insights into the life and personal thoughts of each featured artist and designer. Passion and knowledge all
wrapped into one.
Milia Maroun ©JoeKesrouani
Milia Maroun ©JoeKesrouani

Milia Maroun is the designer behind Lebanon-founded womenswear label milia m. The work of this multi-disciplinary designer crosses the boundaries between art and fashion. Born and brought up in Beirut, Maroun studied fashion design at ESMOD in Paris, subsequently launching her own fashion label in 2000. She is a pioneering female fashion designer from the Middle East. Her latest Kimabaya exhibitions took place at the Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris (2016), A’maree’s in Newport Beach California (2017), Espace Muraille in Geneva (2017) and as part of Nomadic Traces show at Warehouse421 in Abu Dhabi (2019). In 2016, Maroun set up a studio in the United Kingdom from where she evolves the two strands of her activity as a designer: conceptual works and limited edition Kimabayas, which are sold through private exhibitions, and the perennial ready-to-wear milia m collection, which is sold through her web-shop.


Are these strange times or the natural consequence of evolution? Technology mobility, nomadic ways for exploring the world. What you see is not what you get. Unease and uncertainty underline our poker faces and eagerness to be happy. Maybe the best days of humanity are behind us. Shall we regress or evolve differently? Maybe we have left behind elements of life that inherently made us happy. Maybe the culture of “modern developed” countries has left us void.

Did our ancestors have it better off? We are flattering ourselves by believing that their existence was so bleak and that our modern, civilized one is, by comparison, so great. Today we go to mindfulness classes, yoga classes we learn breathing techniques, just so for a moment we can live in the present.

Stop for a second, take a breath, zoom out and think. How do we make our acts count? How can we contribute in this need for change? What is the change we are looking for? A cry for truth? For basic rights? Take a look back, start from the beginning with baby steps looking forward and give yourself a second chance, a chance to learn from mistakes with the hope to do better.

Greener On The Other Side Milia Maroun & Zeina Kronfol and Pamela Haydamous
Greener On The Other Side Milia Maroun & Zeina Kronfol and Pamela Haydamous

As Lebanese we are facing an unprecedented environmental crisis.

Ammar Abd Rabbo, Altogether as One. Courtesy of Ammar Abd Rabbo
Ammar Abd Rabbo, Altogether as One. Courtesy of Ammar Abd Rabbo

The people are one. Lebanese protesters have been united under the national flag in a show of unity.

Ammar Abd Rabbo, Woman March of Lights. Courtesy of Ammar Abd Rabbo.
Ammar Abd Rabbo, Woman March of Lights. Courtesy of Ammar Abd Rabbo.

I am optimistic in the power of the people and I see a glimmer of hope at the end of the long tunnel. Ammar Abd Rabbo, Woman March.

Une Femme en Colère Kimabaya, Milia Maroun in collaboration with Lamia Ziade
Une Femme en Colère Kimabaya, Milia Maroun in collaboration with Lamia Ziade

Women, sisters, mothers, wives are screaming in unity for change, for evolution.

Although life changes are inevitable, we can also initiate personal change so we can rise to the challenge and become our better self
Although life changes are inevitable, we can also initiate personal change so we can rise to the challenge and become our better self

Although life changes are inevitable, we can also initiate personal change so we can rise to the challenge and become our better self.

Image courtesy of Afropolitain Magazine
Image courtesy of Afropolitain Magazine

Happiness is enjoying the little things in life.


A VERSION OF THIS ARTICLE APPEARED IN PRINT IN SELECTIONS, SHOW & TELL #51 PAGES 90-93.

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SELECTIONS is a platform for the arts, focusing on the Arab World.

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