The Welcome Committee
Sean IZZARD creates a powerful visual for The Welcome Committee’s campaign to point out the financial cost of the inhumane mandatory offshore detention policy.
“The Welcome Committee believes that the mandatory detention policy is not only inhumane it is a vast waste of Federal Government funds,” says Lou Weis, Creative Director of Broached Communications. “There are inexpensive, empathetic ways to process asylum seekers that pose no risk to the community.”
“Australia has a great tradition of welcoming migrants, especially those from wars we have participated in. It is insane that we undertake military action against countries and call the victims of those wars illegal arrivals. They are the result of, in some cases collaborators in, our military excursions.
“We didn’t know where this idea  would go or how it would happen, but we felt that we needed to use a real refugee for this campaign. It’s all about the eye contact, the emotive appeal, and we wanted that to be genuine,” says The Welcome Committee.
“While looking for photographers, we came across Sean’s work, his portraits. What struck us was the dialogue, the genuine exchange that you could see come through in the image. This is exactly what we were looking for.”
“The biggest  problem was finding a refugee who would be willing to participate in this kind of activity, be the face of this campaign. It was understandably very difficult. But then we met Nazanin, a friend of a friend, Iva Pfeiffer, who was producing fashion shows for refugee girls at the time. We didn’t know how to approach her at first, it’s hard to ask something like this, but the minute we called her she said she had just gotten her visa stamped 3 hours before. It was perfect, it felt right.”
“Everything after that fell into place very fluidly, it was unbelievable. We approached Sean and he was so engaged in the project and inspired by it. And you could feel that on set. It was exactly what we thought it would be”
“Naz is a photographer, which made this even more amazing. The dialogue between she and Sean about the industry and how she could keep going with it was sparkling, it was magic. When you do something that’s right, everything just aligns.”

Learn more: The Welcome Committee

Client: The Welcome Committee

Founding members:
Dave King – The Royals
Lou Weis – Broached Communications
Grace McQuilten – The Social Studio
Giuseppe Demaio – Local Peoples

Photographer: Sean Izzard
Digital Operator: Stefan Wellsmore
Hair & Make-Up Stylist: David Grainger
Post Production: Cream Studios

Featuring: Nazanin Sabzpoori