Travelling throughout the Netherlands, Marwan Bassiouni examines Muslim identity through the windows and outside views of mosques
“I used to describe myself as a photojournalist, and was very proud of it,” wrote Abbas in 2017. “The choice was to think of oneself either as a photojournalist or an artist. It wasn’t out of humility that I called myself a photojournalist, but arrogance. I thought photojournalism was superior, but these days I don’t call myself a photojournalist because, although I use the techniques of a photojournalist and get published in magazines and newspapers, I am working at things in depth and over long periods of time. I don’t just make stories about what’s happening. I’m making stories about my way of seeing what’s happening.” Abbas has been described as a “born photographer”, who over his 60-year career covered war and revolution in Vietnam, the Middle East, Bangladesh, Biafra, Chile, Cuba, Apartheid South Africa, and Northern Ireland. He also pursued a lifelong interest in religion in his work, shooting in 29 countries to create the book and exhibition Allah O Akbar: A Journey Through Militant Islam, and publishing long-term series on Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, and animism.
“With this exhibition FOAM is trying to form a vision of how contemporary photography is shaped by young photographers,” says Mirjam Kooiman, curator at the FOAM Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam. “These artists have already made really good work, and they have a lot of potential.”
“Istanbul is such a diverse place, so naturally the fashion world matches that,” says photojournalist Monique Jaques, who lives in the city. “I wanted to highlight the unique relationship women have with fashion – that you can dress in a conservative but expressive, colourful and modern way.” Jaques, whose work has been published in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and the Telegraph, began shooting the images for the series in 2011, during Istanbul’s Islamic Fashion Week. She photographed catwalk shows and behind-the-scenes activities for two days, but continues to add to the series, contacting fashion bloggers and magazines about photographing their events and shoots. “I really love working on this project because it challenges the conventional stereotypes that Islamic women can’t be fashionable,” says Jaques. “The women I photographed jokingly said, ‘This isn’t your mother’s Islam.’ There are many homegrown design houses in Istanbul, such as Armine and Tekbir, as well as Ala, a fashion magazine that translates modern trends for conservative ladies. There is a huge market for high-end conservative fashion in Turkey and a growing demand for it …