the new Inside Out project by JR
A few weeks ago Amy posted a piece in the City Beautiful series about Inside Out, the Parisian artist/photographer JR’s “one wish to change the world” with the help of a $100,000 TED Prize. As a follow up to that piece, I thought I’d share some photos from a recent Inside Out street exhibition in Tunisia where “six Tunisian photographers travelled the country to take pictures of 100 « normal » Tunisians representing the Tunisian diversity: men and women, young and old, from North, South East and West, rich or poor, civil servants, business people, workers, farmers, unemployed, and much more…”
In an email about the project, JR talks a little bit about the importance of this exhibition:
“For the first large street exhibition in a nascent Arab democracy, the posting promised to be surprising and the confrontation with art not always simple. Our first two days were quite hot (insulted in La Goulette the first day, posters taken down in Tunis the second day). So we decided to go to Sidi Bouzid (where it all started), an isolated region, to work with those who did the revolution before coming back to the popular districts of the capital.
“There is nothing better to understand the weight of traditions and the willingness to change than to post big portraits in the symbolic places of the popular districts and try to explain the concept to people nearby…
“And then, we received a warm welcome in Sfax, Sidi Bouzid, Le Kram where men and women (OK, mostly men) have asked questions, challenged the project, raised objections, posted with us, explained the project to their neighbors…
“We come back with hope that Tunisia will become a country open to art as Spain after Franco or Berlin after the wall was taken down.
“Artocracy in Tunisia, an project initiated by Slim Zeghal and Marco Berrebi and created with the group of Tunisia photographers including Sophia Baraket, Rania Dourai, Wissal Dargueche, Aziz Tnani, Hichem Driss and Héla Ammar.”
~ Ariana K. MacPherson