A project by Roï Saade for Middle East Now Festival 2020


“For that is a country where you are constantly having to question yourself about your affiliations, your origins, your relationships with the others, and your possible place in the sun and the shade.”

— Amin Maalouf, On Identity


This is a collaborative photography project across the MENA region in which 7 photographers from 7 different cities are brought together to provide a personal visual narrative of their city, offering an alternative narrative to the often negative or geopolitical representation of that city in the media.

Each photographer was assigned a specific day of the week for a period of time to portray their city from a local and personal point of view, and to replace the contested political images of their native cities.

This project aims to present a collective voice that connects throughout the Middle East and North Africa regardless of religious, social or political context. It brings together local visual voices to tell a story of their cities, culminating in an exhibit and newspaper publication.

The 7 participating photographers are:
MYRIAM BOULOS — Beirut, Lebanon
SINA SHIRI — Tehran, Iran
ABDO SHANAN — Algiers, Algeria
AMIR HAZIM — Baghdad, Iraq
REEM FALAKNAZ — Dubai, United Arab Emirates
ERDEM VAROL — Istanbul, Turkey
MOUAD ABILLAT — Marrakesh, Morocco