Photographs by Costa Brazil.

Staying true to its ethos that “without nature, there is no beauty,” Costa Brazil has launched a Creative Coalition that will help protect the tropical rainforest.

The luxury beauty brand’s founder, Francisco Costa, started the company in December 2018 using ingredients sustainably sourced from the Amazon. Committed to creating clean, sustainable products that encourage people to be more proactive in the fight against climate change, Costa Brazil is building off its partnership with Conservation International for its newest endeavor. To extend its reach, Costa Brazil has established the Creative Coalition to enlist individuals rooted in the arts to create what it said is “beautiful, provocative work that captures people’s attention and inspires them to take action.” In lieu of payment, each participant will receive a certificate from Conservation International highlighting how many acres of rainforest their participation has helped to protect. This year’s goal is to protect 400 acres, or 100,000 trees, of the tropical rainforest.

In a phone interview from Brazil, where he is working on a design project for the upcoming Carnival, Costa said the Creative Coalition melds with Costa Brazil’s ideology. He said, “It wasn’t a matter of why, but being a company with a strong social pillar, it was only natural to engage people to communicate their talents and desire to help and be part of a coalition,” and emphasized the importance of engaging young talent from architects to painters to photographers, among other creatives.

Working with the Washington, D.C.-based group Conservation International, Costa Brazil said they asked, “How can we engage? How can we become more alive?” After deciding to set up the Creative Coalition, Costa said they approached Art Partner first, “who loved the idea and wanted to know how they could help.” The first campaign bowed Friday. With at least “10 major people on the lineup,” Costa said, “they give us their time however they want to. We don’t impose what has to be done so, collaboratively, we came up with this campaign [that] David Croland shot with a couple of young models.”

Croland, who was a muse to the late photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, shot the portraits for Costa with help from Heroes Models. The combination of the establishment and the next generation has multiple levels, since Croland and Costa are friends. “I know him really well so we put something together to make something really unusual and fresh that’s not pretentious,” Costa said.

Making the point that the Creative Coalition is not a matter of having an artist make a piece of art, which is later sold, Costa said the initiative is more about people giving their time. He added, “It’s really more free in a sense. We, in a sense as a company, are backing that up with a financial commitment with CI.”

Crolands’ portraits were spotlighted in Costa Brazil’s “Give Love” Valentine’s Day campaign and each campaign is allocated 80 acres of protected forestry through CI. “By sharing your desire to be part of a great cause, we support CI for your actions,” Costa said. “It’s very simple. There’s nothing new about the concept other than we’re putting it into action. We felt that was the best way to engage new people with CI, to have them be proud and to share the knowledge that they have acquired by being part of CI. The idea is to broaden CI’s influence in that sense.”

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