Bite! magazine » Elie Domit

I Was Humbled By People’s Resilience And Hospitality

The focus of my photography is the Middle East, on women and children especially. Lebanon in particular is interesting because of its key location as a gate to the Middle East, between the West and the Arab world. I grew up and lived in both Lebanon and the U.S. I am a Lebanese insider who speaks the language, knows the country, and understands its people, but also an outsider who can see Lebanon and its complexities through Western eyes, who can still be intrigued by the dichotomies that are shocking to the Westerner, but unnoticed by the locals.

Pause For Thought, Even If Just For A Microsecond

Turn Right is a term lifted from military vocabulary, and hence a priori it is no wonder that I would choose it as a title for my photo series on Palestinian soldiers. My soldiers, however, are not shown marching or parading. Most of them are not moving at all in front of the camera. Their very stillness reveals the complex resonance of the title which, depending on how one reads the two constituent words, can be taken to mean very different things: a command to turn right, a right or correct change of direction, or the right to change direction. Faced with the simple command: Right Turn!, every soldier and, generally, every human being, would pause for thought, even if just for a microsecond, before reacting. The response, if it leads to an observable external action, would not, however, reveal anything about the inner state of mind. Indeed, in view of the complexities of today’s socio-political environment and of individual histories, what would be the right turn to take? Should one turn to the right, turn around in circles, turn back, or turn away?

Being On The Edge Between Two Worlds

As a mother of a teenage daughter I have been watching with awe her passage from girlhood into adulthood, with all the complications that it entails. As I am observing her and her girlfriends, I became fascinated with the transformation taking place, with the adult personality shaping up and with an insecurity and a self-consciousness that are now replacing the carefree world those girls had live in so far. I started photographing them in group situations, and quickly realized that they were so aware of each other’s presence, and that their being in a group affected very much whom they were portraying to the world. I also realized that under an air of self-assurance, those young women were often very fragile, self-conscious and confused. While their bodies were developing fast into women’s bodies, they were still young girls who suddenly thought they had to behave like adults.

It Is A Stage That Becomes A Metaphor For Life

I was attracted to Mirzaei’s series Human because of it very graphic nature. With this work the viewer has to approach very closely to see the images are actually photographic in nature, and not drawn or cut out silhouettes. It is as if you are looking through a microscope at scenes from the proverbial ant heap. Like a film maker, Mirzaei has zoomed out to capture different configurations, deciding when the shot was right or whether to wait for a few moments for the actors to regroup in different postures.

A Culture That Came To Bloom After The Oil Boom

The title of this project deals with the idea of subsistence in a renounced space and prevalence of identity within unwanted houses or structures in the United Arab Emirates (specifically Dubai, Sharjah and Ajman). The photographs of these spaces are varied from being semi-abandoned (people moving to new houses), to those soon to be demolished in lieu of a bigger and more innovative edifice. These interiors represent a young culture that came to notice after the oil boom nearly thirty years ago. With the current need for modernism and the building of the ‘future,’ cultural extinction is sadly inevitable and a new identity is thus forming.

Yes, These Are Reminders That Time Is Passing

The sense of emptiness of a house whose occupants have departed is somehow striking for me. There is a profound feeling -somewhat- strange about the abandoned houses. Most of the time there is a sad story behind it; forced immigration, need for money, grown children who have left or even death.

What Ruin War Brings To Homes Of Ordinary People

Dalia Khamissy: Wednesday July 12, 2006, Hezbollah militants captured two Israeli soldiers in an operation that sparked a series of attacks on Lebanon’s infrastructure, civilians’ houses and natural environment. The offensive lasted for 34 days, during which I was working as the photo editor for an international news agency in its Beirut office; I only saw the conflict through the images that I edited of other photographers. The country was packed with local and international media that transmitted their stories for few weeks after the cease-fire until the world lost interest in Lebanon’s news, and the citizens, whose lives had changed forever, were forgotten. I quit my job by the end of 2006.

Day 180 – An Essentially Fragmented Persona

Steve Sabella’s In Exile is an attempt to reconstruct an identity which he felt deconstructed by the political situation in his former home town, Jerusalem. We sense the loss of the home, a confusion of not really belonging anywhere, of being suspended between cultures, of a bewildering multitude of perspectives that present themselves as possible ways of living.