Fares Cachoux’s striking designs illustrate three and a half years of bloody uprising in Syria.
Fares Cachoux is an artist and graphic designer from Homs, Syria. In this series of posters, he hopes to preserve the memory of the places, the people, and the tragedies of the ongoing conflict in Syria.
“Each poster is a cry,” he told BuzzFeed, “which hopefully will reach somebody’s ears, so that they can know, maybe years from now, what happened in Syria.
“For the moment, the sound of weapons is dominating, but when all that stops, these posters will help to keep the story of Syrian people alive.”
This poster marks the mood of the first demonstrations of the Syrian uprising in March 2011. The man depicted on the right is Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whose silhouette appears throughout the series.
The songbird in this poster represents Ibrahim Qashoush, a singer from Hama who wrote protest songs against Assad – whose name literally means “lion”. Qashoush went missing in the summer of 2011. Hama residents found his body in a local riverwith his throat cut, and, they claimed, his vocal cords torn out.
In 2011, the city of Homs was the “capital” of the Syrian revolution, putting up an early fight against the Assad regime. Afterwards, the city was besieged by government forces, had many of its oldest neighborhoods destroyed, and came back under the control of the regime.
“Hamza is Prettier Than You”
During the siege of Homs, 13-year-old Hamza Bakkour died of a horrific injury to his jaw and throat, recorded in a video that shocked Syrians. In this poster, Assad suffers a similar fate.
“Al Houla — The Massacre”
This poster commemorates the events of May 25, 2012, when government forces shelled the Syrian village of Al Houla, killing 108 people, including 34 women and 49 children, according to the United Nations.
“The Fifth Speech”
On June 3, 2012, Assad delivered his fifth speech since the outbreak of the revolution. In it, he denied responsibility for the massacre at Houla, and likened the government crackdown to a surgeon trying to save the life of his patient. According to Cachoux, it marked the moment when many Syrians lost hope that Assad might peacefully resign.
“The Battle of Aleppo”
According to Cachoux, Syria’s largest city, Aleppo, was once known for its cuisine, and particularly its kebabs. With many of its landmarks destroyed and many of its residents having fled, the city now faces the threat of a siege by government forces.
Jabhat Al-Nusra first emerged in January 2012 as a militant rebel faction fighting Assad’s forces, and pledged its formal allegiance to al-Qaeda in April 2014.
The so-called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group emerged as an organisation distinct from al-Qaeda in 2013, and began carrying out what Cachoux describes as “unprecedented acts of brutality and barbarism” in Syria.
This poster depicts the support the Assad regime has enjoyed from Russia, symbolised as a bear, and its foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov.
Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS, styles himself as the Caliph.
In another collection, titled The Syrians, Cachoux commemorates several other bloody moments from the last few years of turmoil in Syria.
“Syrian on the Riverbank”
Cachoux says this work is meant to depict the events of January 29, 2013, when residents of Aleppo pulled the bodies of about 100 handcuffed young men who had been shot in the head from the Kwaik river.
“A Syrian Buying Bread”
The above poster illustrates the multiple instances of shelling and bombing ofcivilians who had been queueing to buy bread.
“A Class of Students From the Faculty of Architecture”
On January 15, 2012, an explosion at the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Aleppo killed 87 people, mostly students.
Some of Cachoux’s designs show hope for Syria’s future, such as this one, which reads, “Damascus will be colourful again.”
And this one, which says, “Aleppo will be colourful again.”
And finally this poster, referring to the city of the artist’s birth, which reads, “Homs will be colourful again.”