Regal photographs of Moroccan brides by French photographer Valerie Belin.
She skillfully uses the simplicity and arresting contrast of a black and white filter to highlight the intricate, elaborate and artistic details of the garments and adornments worn by these Moroccan brides, giving them a monarch-like royal appearance, highlighting the significance of this event in the bride’s life and Moroccan culture.
Valérie Belin’s often abstract compositions are also notable for being richly ornamental. Decked out like idols, these Moroccan brides turn into decorative motifs while asserting the irreducible alterity of their presence. With her body wholly disappearing behind the magnificence of her costume, the Fez bride is emblematic of this series. Her heavy, purely ceremonial gown, held in place by a wooden frame, is both literally and figuratively a prison, a symbol of the wife’s subjection. Its envelope-like appearance, however, also evokes the chrysalis, one of the artist’s favoured themes, which resonates particularly here with the young girl’s metamorphosis into a woman.
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