Thursday, November 3, 2011

Portraying Africa's Middle Class - The Other Africa

French-born photographer Philippe Sibelly has spent six years documenting a side of the African continent often ignored by mainstream media.

While African stories traditionally focus on the struggles and conflicts on the continent, Sibelly’s journeyman project showcases Africa’s stories of success.

The Other Africa is a photographic project started in 2005, a visual document studying the emergence of a middle class on the continent. The ever-growing set of images is made up of portraits of African professionals, images of African cities at night and portraits of radio DJs.

Sibelly has spent six years travelling through as many of Africa’s 54 countries as he can (up from 53 with the recent addition of South Sudan), trying to capture the middle class of every nation on the continent on film.

The project is a constant evolution as he continues to travel to Africa from his base in London as time and finances allow.

The resulting exhibition has been shown in the UK, and made its African debut in Accra, Ghana, in 2011. Now Sibelly hopes to bring the tour to other African countries.

The philosophy of the project also aims to restore dignity to both the concept of African imagery, and the people who appear in those images, who are given the recognition they deserve for their participation. read more

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