This shoot is the first in a series where I will be exploring notions of girlhood in the city that I grew up in: Cairo. Here I was looking specifically at the non-religious cultural tradition of buying new clothes for the first day of Eid, a Muslim holiday that follows Ramadan.
I used the Zoo because it is a local hang out, especially during the time of national holidays. People go with their families to celebrate and show off their fresh garms! I wanted to try and capture a joy that a lot of Egyptians have lost given the current political climate in post-revolution Egypt.
Arab girls or Muslim girls do not tend to have a lot of representation in fashion, and when they do, it’s either as some sort of token or it’s done in an orientalist manner. I’m hoping to find a happy middle where I can create fashion imagery that has a duality; working both within an Egyptian cultural context as well as contemporary fashion image.
Photographer and stylist: Malak El Sawi
Model: Noha Aboul Fadl
Disclaimer: gal-dem does not endorse the practice of keeping animals in captivity, and respects that zoos are a contentious issue regarding animal rights. However we have chosen to publish this photo series shot in Giza Zoo due to its cultural significance that is essential to the message the photographer is trying to convey.