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Rania Matar: L'Enfant-Femme
Introduction by Her Majesty Queen Noor. Text by Lois Lowry. Afterword by Kristen Gresh.
In today’s world of endless photographing, tagging and posting images online, what is a pre-teen girl’s relationship to the camera? Upending assumptions of contemporary digital image-making practices, photographer Rania Matar (born 1964) reframes these young women through her poignant portraits of them, revealing in L’Enfant-Femme how girls between the ages of 8 and 13 interact with the camera and in so doing depicts them in deeply personal and poetic ways. Addressing themes of representation, voyeurism and transgression, these images remind us of the fragility of youth while also gesturing toward its unbridled curiosity and joy. Photographing girls in the Middle East and the United States, Matar makes us examine our universality, a beauty that transcends place, background and religion. Candidly capturing her subjects at a critical juncture in the early stages of adolescence, Matar conveys the confluence of angst, sexuality and personhood that defines the progression from childhood into adulthood.
"Maryam" is reproduced from Rania Matar: L'Enfant-Femme.
PRAISE AND REVIEWS
Dress straps slip off shoulders, painted nails splay on hips. At first glance, the postures struck by the children in Rania Matar’s photographs are grown-up. But look more closely at these girls, who are aged between eight and 13, and the picture becomes more complex. They look variously knowing, sophisticated, elegant, inelegant and uncertain. Some are playing mum. Some are playing A-lister. All have been caught in the process of becoming, as Matar puts it, “a little woman”.
Beautiful and sensitive images grace the pages of Rania's stunning new book. These moving photographs evoke a fundamental sense of cross-cultural understanding.
If it's possible to be fluent in preteen girl, Rania Matar has to be close.
In locking eyes with Matar’s diverse girl squad, we recognise that their nationalities are both unknown and irrelevant... The evocative gaze and telling body language of each girl convey a transnational struggle to find your place in the world.
L'Oeil de la Photographie
Matar beautifully captures girls’ developing identities at this key moment in their lives... The photographs themselves share more about each girl than any verbal description would.
While many photographers focus on either aesthetics or rigorous documentation, Rania Matar fuses them — and adds a generous dose of humanity for good measure
Christian Science Monitor
Photographer Rania Matar’s third publication, L’Enfant-Femme, celebrates girlhood in transition. She is a gifted portraitist; her oeuvre is girls and women…The journey toward womanhood, with its expectations, demands, and hopes, is difficult to express. Yet Matar captures the essence of the struggle.
STATUS: Out of stock
Temporarily out of stock pending additional inventory.
FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG
CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 1/30/2017
Rania Matar's 2014 photograph of Darine, seven years old, and Dania, eight, in Beirut, Lebanon, is reproduced from L'Enfant-Femme, the photographer's recent book of portraits of preteen girls in the U.S. and Lebanon. "Matar’s photographs are taken in many different settings," Kristen Gresh writes, "from Syrian refugee girls on the streets of Beirut and Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon to upper-class homes in Beirut and Boston. However, as we turn the pages – each plate a poetic plethora of emotions and feelings – the photographs themselves share more about each girl than any verbal description would." continue to blog
FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG
CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 2/1/2017
Rania Matar's 2012 photograph of nine-year-old Salma in Beirut, Lebanon, is reproduced from L'Enfant-Femme, the Lebanese-born, Arab-American photographer's recent book of portraits of preteen girls in both countries. "Matar strips away the confines of societal labels from both herself and the girls she photographs," writes Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan. "She exposes the boundaries of American and Arab cultures in order to reconcile them. Her subjects are not simply American; they are not simply Arab; neither are they simply Muslim, Christian, or Jewish. These girls are simply girls – but much more besides. Matar’s photographs are images of girls at the point where they are beginning to become women – a powerful combination of youth, womanhood, and beauty." continue to blog
USD $60.00 | CAN $84 UK £ 53
Pub Date: 11/16/2021
Active | In stock
USD $50.00 | CAN $67.5
Pub Date: 2/23/2016
Active | Out of stock