Amira Ziyan (1977) lives and works in Yarka. She graduated her BA and MA in Art from Haifa University (2007-2012). Ziyan’s work is rooted within staged photography, with an emphasis on portraits which often conceal the photographed figures’ faces, by positioning objects and creating environments from which the face is absent. In her photographs, Ziyan frequently documents women in current Druze society, raising questions about socio-cultural norms, feminism and gender issues.
About the work
In Amira Ziyan’s photographs everyday scenes are captured as they occur in the symbolic space. They explore issues of female identity in Druze society. In Seven Sisters we see a dinner whose diners remain hidden from our eyes. All we see of them are their hands. The foods are basic: milk, bread, eggs; and allude to religious and traditional motifs. The food and the hand gestures create a mysterious and even supernatural image which stresses the struggle between erasure of the women’s identities and their attempts to make them present. Ziyan’s stance is critical yet ambivalent: the contrast between black background and pale hued foods emphasizes the conflict between concealed and revealed, religion and secularism, tradition and progress, and links rigid patriarchal social codes to an expressive reality.
Artist’s website: https://he.amira-ziyan.com