2016 - present
Photography, Video, Collage, Performance
“ Was that really you? engages with the question of representation of women in photographic images produced and circulated in the Arab region and their varying social status and use. The project is particularly interested in images that do not primarily form part of artistic image production such as private image archives, stock photography, illustrations in books, magazines, images from photo studios or used on the packaging of products. Through out the research the artist engages with the dominant aesthetics of the contemporary photographic industry and reworks them.
The main motive of Mounier’s research is the various forms of images of women and the different ways in which they are circulated and shared. She is interested in questions such as: Why are some images private and cannot be shared with the public? How can the image and its status transform by changing one or few aspects of it? And, on the other hand, what about the images of women that are being circulated widely, yet are in no way connected to the actual person represented in the picture?” Curator Andrea Thal, contemporary Image Collective
The project was shown as an ongoing research in:
- Mass Alexandria Year Exhibition,Alexandria, 2016
- Photo Cairo Festival, Vol 6, Saad Zaghloul Culture Centre, Cairo, 2017
- I will Defend Myself, Solo Exhibition, Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo, 2017
- Roznama 7, Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, 2019
- Summer Rundgang at HBK Hochschule für Bildende Künste, Braunschweig, 2019
- BS Projects Scholarship final Exhibition, Braunschweig, (Upcoming)
Silkscreen prints, Found footage, newspaper archive, 2019
I will defend myself looks into Egyptian Tabloids, specified in sensational crime stories and celebrities gossip, as a public platform using images of women. it tries to understand these images in relation to the journalistic forms and linguistic aspects that show the industry’s misogyny and domination over women’s representation in images.
The presence of the black strips covering the faces is particularly tied to misconduct and notoriety, as well as hiding the identity of those depicted, although most of the images used have nothing to do with the news they accompany. It raises the question of what is the use of these images then if their eroticism is dulled by hiding the eyes and covering the faces? who has ownership over these images ? and to what degree are they tied to the identities of those pictured?
The work tries to abstract the violence practiced over these images by decontextualizing them from the journal prints, playing with text fragments. it again questions whether reproduction of these images recreates the violence or deconstruct it?
* This project is part of (Was That Really You?) , the long term image-based research that engages with the different representations of women in photography.
Cairo Bats are a collective of female artists based in Cairo.
Act 1: The Roof was the first public exhibition of Cairo Bats work and assembled a series of pictures spanning a period of two years taken on roof tops in the city. Cairo Bats are currently working on a new body of work under the working title Act 2: The Play.
The Cairo Bats group has been working together for four years and currently consists of the artists Mai Al Shazly, Nadia Mounier, Hagar Masoud, Omneia Naguib, Yvonne Buchheim, Magdalena Kallenberger.
APERTURE, Issue 224, Dispatches: Cairo
By Ismail Fayed
"Act 1: The Roof becomes a visual exploration of places fraught with disorder, informality, organic forms, and the marginalized of society. The play on darkness and light, the ambiguous choreography, and the bodies that situate themselves in relationship to the city itself, as well as to its history both past and present, make for an artistic vision that confronts Cairo, investigating possibilities of engagement beyond the limits of chaos.”
Documentary photography | 2015
On August 20، 1953, the French Resident General forced King of Morocco Mohammed V into exile on Corsica for his political actions. In protest against the exile of the political and religious leader, Moroccans went to the streets and there were bloody riots throughout the Kingdom, calling for the immediate return of the Sultan. People were more than ever attached to their King. The nationalists' claim that the reflection of King Mohammed V's face could be seen in the moon spread throughout the Moroccan territory. This myth consolidated the legitimacy of the Sultan even in the farthest regions of the Kingdom. The Sultan became the epitome of Moroccan nationalism. The consensus of such myth stems from the fact that those who did not see Muhammad V in the moon, can not breach the majority, fearing to be considered traitors.
This photo series from the old Medina of Marrakech look into the images people include in their daily work spaces as a decoration. The 40+ photographs covering a large range of the city’s old and touristic shops ranged between images of imaginary landscapes and images with religious significance but mostly photos of the king and his ancestors. The choice behind the images found, was an expression of the personal aesthetics of the shop owners as well as their patriotism to the king and Morocco. A ritual that is not new for Arab countries but what was signifiant about those images is the wide range of the king’s photos, that covers his everyday life as a father, young man as well as a king, which allow the shop owners to choose what actually matches their business and taste.
- Maroc artist meeting, MAM '15 collaborative exhibition,Marrakech, Morocco, 2015
- Marrakesh Biennial 6th edition, parallel program, Morocco, 2015
Public Street Art, Documentary Photography | 2012
After the widespread disillusions following the first post-revolutionary elections in Egypt, I created my own fake election campaign, in which I promised bread, education and security- three common promises used by politicians. In each Image, I added details referring to the fake character of the promises.
The material for the campaign was 3 studio self-portraits. the plan was to design the posters, print them and to start gluing them in Cairo streets beside the remained, ruined election posters with the same visual way. Finally I start documenting the reactions and the changes that went with them day after day.
The campaign is called Soutk (your vote) and there was a blog launched on the day of gluing for documenting and accepting reviews from people interested in the idea.
- Cairo. Open City.New Testimonies from an Ongoing Revolution”, Braunschweig, Germany, 2012
- Mediterranea ’16 Biennial, Ancona, Italy, 2013
- Beirut: bodies in public conference, workshop and exhibition, Lebanon, 2014
- Backlight Photo Festival, Tampere,Finland, 2014
- The Autonomy of Self, P21 Gallery, London, 2015
Project Link: www.soutk2012.blogspot.com
Documentary Photography | 2014
Consumership casts a critical eye on the urban development of Cairo and takes as its subject the nexus between consumer society and urban space. With the aid of photography, I investigate the paradoxical relationship between the desolate, natural city landscapes and the growing urban sprawl of the metropolis. I wanted to find subjects that symbolically connect with each other. Photographs as such have little explanatory power, it is their arrangement and juxtaposition that are far more suggestive.
- Next To Here group exhibition, curated by Constanze Wike, Goethe Institute, Cairo, Dubai, Khartoum, Ramallah, Tunisia, 2013, 2014
- Layer of Green, 11 photographic work, CIC, Cairo, 2013
Photography prints, glossy paper print 10X15 | 2015
NAZAR is defined as; to direct your eyes in a particular direction. NAZAR (look) is to exercise the power of vision.
The project is a collection of more than 60 images from primary school books. It goes to recreate the contexts of these images, and ties them in a new narrative form, built upon practicing of photography as an art form rather than a technical usage.
The project is interested in the modern circulation of images digitally and how it affects its contexts and meanings. The images were digitally scanned from books, and reprinted on glossy photo print upon it’s original size. During this process the images gained new details and lost others, related to it’s quality and content.
- Maroc artist meeting, MAM '15 exhibition, Marrakech, Morocco, 2015
- Roznama 4, Medrar contemporary art space, Cairo, Egypt, 2015
Documentary photography, text, 2014
The project is a series of documentary photographs accompanied by a story-text tackling the closure of Tahrir metro Station in 2014, the heart and main vein for Cairo. The closure come as a security precautions and lasted for around 18 months which strongly resonated in the whole city changing its routes and regular passes and destinations. The photos are an observation to the unspoken struggle of drawing graffiti by the protestors and removing it quick by the regime represented in the cleaning workers inside the station, such endless contest reflects an image to the political changes that followed quickly in Egypt since the 2011 uprising.
On the other hand the text is a trail to imagine the empty station abandoned in complete darkness., where it was once the destination of thousands, lying underneath Tahrir Square where 2011 revolution sparks. It also tries to create a correspondent image of the challenges of photography in Egypt and its complicated relation with the higher interests of the country.
- Roznama 3, Medrar for contemporary art, Cairo, 2014
- Kevat Egyptisa, Jyvaskyla, 2015
What disappears does not cease to exist.
The walls of the Tahrir underground metro station consist of rectangular brown and white tiles that form Pharaonic faces and images. If you’re beside the face of Horus, then you must be going in the direction of the bus station exit. And if you’re beside the great Nefertiti, then you’re going in the direction of the Tahrir central bureaucratic headquarters, al-mugamma‘. In order to easily decipher these images, distance yourself the full width of the underground tunnel, and stand directly before them. Take a few steps to the left or right. Now you can see them clearly, for their forms in reality are not as they appear in photographs.
What disappears does not cease to exist.
Images create an immortal city, a city of clay that’s formed and ever re-formed.
Its revolution is on its walls.
Creative Documentary 42 min | 2015
The film is co-directed by Marouan Omara & Nadia Mounier in collaboration with filmmaker Islam Kamal.
The Visit is an experimental visual journey in one of the very first nations find agriculture the seed of it's civilisation.The Film tackled a TV crew during their trip making an ordinary television reportage, In one of a very limited opportunities to see what happens behind a TV camera in Egypt.
An International nongovernmental organization in Egypt commissioned director Marouan Omara to film a documentary about the development of agriculture and irrigation system in Egypt, with the focus over the role of women in the Egyptian farm life. The film was rejected for "it's style that does not meet the media-habits of Egyptians in rural areas" said by the film commissioner. The Visit tries to explore and deconstruct the mass media role in a society, where media had become the main tool of creating and reshaping the public opinion.
- Jihlava IDFF, Czech Republic, 2015
- Gottingen Ethnographic Film Festival, Germany, 2016
- CinemAfrica, Sweeden
- Luxor African Film Festival
- Goethe Film Week - Kario,
- Rencontres de L'image film week at the French Cultural Centre, Cairo, Egypt.
According to the chamber of commerce, Egypt's total import receipt of firecrackers and toys ranges between LE500 to LE700 million per year. Made in China is a video interested in the chinese plastic toys that occupy the streets of Cairo. The project seeks to create an experimental visual treatment of their presence around the city, depending on their funny designed nature that creates another magical image of a city like Cairo.
- Cairo 6th Video Festival, Cairo, 2014
Analogue/digital photography, 2012
إن الروح تغادر الجسد في بعض الأحيان و تقوم ببعض الجولات - مقولة صوفية
Out of borders (2012) is a photo series created from interviews with some of the immigrants in Marseille, mostly from North Africa.
it snaps their journey since leaving their homeland until they are settled in the French Mediterranean city.
The project was the output of a workshop led by Magnum photographer Antoine D'Agata organized by Studio Vortex, Marseille in collaboration with Contemporary Image Collective (CIC) from Cairo as well as 11 other international photography schools.
- Studio Vortex Workshop Exhibition, 2012
- Marseille Vu Par 100 Photographs, Marseille, 2013