Lalla Essaydi | the artist
The artist Lalla Essaydi
Born 1956, , Morocco.
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Original artworks, prints, exhibition posters, monographs, books, collectibles.
“In my art, I wish to present myself through multiple lenses—as artist, as Moroccan, as Saudi, as traditionalist, as Liberal, as Muslim. In short, I invite the viewer to resist stereotypes.
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The traditions of Islam exist within spatial boundaries. The presence of men defines public space, the streets, the meeting places. Women are confined to private spaces, the architecture of the homes. In these photographs, I am constraining women within space, confining them to their "proper" place, a place bounded by walls and controlled by men. Their confinement is a decorative one…
At first glance, the works of Moroccan photographer Lalla Essaydi seem overrun with Arabic calligraphy spills across, around and over nearly every element. The incessant, intricate pattern is both background and foreground, covering the central figures and the swaths of cloth hung behind them equally. Despite this, Essaydis photographs are quiet rather than clamorous, the brown lines of calligraphy slip across serene, sepia- clad, often veiled female figures and backdrops, speaking of a quiet determination.
Through her thought-provoking photographs, Moroccan-born artist Lalla Essaydi confronts the issues of confinement and repression experienced by many women in Islamic societies…