Love Letter to Sudan

In Editor's Pick, Modernity/Tradition by Shaza Elnour

Artist Statement:

Inspired by Yodith Dammlash’s The Names We Bear; Love Letter to Sudan is a photo essay created mixing photographs of my family in Sudan from the 1960s – 1990s.

Diaspora experiences and learning to navigate hyphenated identities are always intricate. Through reworking and compiling these images, the aim is to imagine some of the lives and visions of Old Sudan, in a way that reflects the experiences of the old and young as well as the individual and their relationship to the collective.

Guided by storytelling and concrete documentation I try to weave together a small grain of reality about life in Sudan, organizing the photos into the following typologies: The self (and how they relate to the community), the community through familial ties, and love as collective celebration.

This photo essay is not an exhaustive retelling of life in Sudan under a dictator regime, and its purpose is to be part of a greater visual storytelling of life in Sudan that may start at but is not exclusive to my family’s immediate experiences.