Adwoa Aboah felt “emotional” returning to Ghana for new Burberry campaign where she starred alongside her family members for a series of intimate photographs promoting the new collection.
The 25-year-old model was born in Britain but her father, Charles Aboah, was raised in the African country and she embraced her family roots when she art-directed a shoot for the upcoming new Burberry range – casting her friend British model Sonny Hall to feature with her in the photographs which were shot at her family home in Accra.The catwalk star admits if felt very “special” to be able to integrate her family into her career.
She said: “I tried very hard not to be too emotional about this trip, but it’s so special for everyone to see where the story started. To be in Ghana means coming home. I’ve been able to bring close friends of mine here, and my grandma and my family have had a taste of what the other part of my life is like”
The series of images feature Adwoa with her Ghanian relatives including her great-auntie Mary Asare, cousin Kensemaa Aboah, grandmother Gladys Aboah and her auntie Tina (Ernestina Aboah) who designed one-off custom outfits from the classic Burberry Vintage check, especially for the shoot, embracing a mix traditional and modern designs.
Speaking to Vogue.com about her trip, she recalled: “I just remember telling my auntie what we wanted her to do, and she was so excited. This is what she does in Ghana, and for her work to be seen on an international scale was so exciting for her. None of us wanted to take our outfits off, because they were so different and cool, modern but very much traditional.”
Never have I been more proud of something. The last part of my series with @burberry Art Directed by myself, shot by #juergenteller Styled by @poppykain. Make-Up by @celiaburtonmakeup Outfits by my Auntie Tina. Featuring my cousin @kensemah My Grandma, Auntie Mary, Auntie Tina and my skrillion @sonny_hall .Thank you to everyone who made this possible, for listening to Juergen and I when we came up with this mad idea. This is what it’s all about, do something different, think outside the box and create something iconic. #juergenxadwoa – Going home, back to the motherland. A place where I felt like an outsider but always wanted to belong. Growing up differently, never knowing the mother tongue. Patronized by the world, one sided images of famine and underdevelopment. Culturally appropriated, continuously stolen with no respect or return. The world knowing nothing about the magic that Ghana is, the beauty and chaos. Where my father was born, the other half of my British blood, Accra. Home away from home with the church and the swing and grandma and grandad, aunties, Kente cloth, fufu and buckets for washing. Memories, so many memories of 6 hour journeys to visit my other half. The last chapter and I want the world to know that there are two families, both that mean the world to me, two sides to my story. I want the world to see the beauty and Ghana to have that moment in the light, one that it has always deserved. I have been claimed by Ghana, told to go and show the world, make them proud. I belong. So that’s what this is, a message of love and pride to my family and the people of Ghana.
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