PDN Photo of the Day

Finding Trust Where Mistrust Dominates

Belgian photographer Bieke Depoorter is known for her ability to build trust with those she photographs in a short amount of time. For the past decade she’s been asking people on the streets of Russia, the United States and Egypt if she and her camera could spend the night in their home. Once inside, she documents fragile, intense, quiet and precarious moments that unfold before her, creating a record of her own journey as well as the lives depicted.

As it may be, a new book published by Aperture, chronicles several trips Depoorter made to Egypt beginning in 2011 with the country’s uprising against poverty, unemployment, government corruption and the leadership of then president Hosni Mubarak. Looking for private moments within the public display of turmoil and suspicion, Depoorter made her way into the dwellings of Egyptian families, making intimate pictures of them. In her distinctive approach, she found trust in a country where mistrust can dominate.

In 2017 Depoorter went back to Egypt with the first draft of As it may be, asking those she photographed to write comments onto the images. “Contrasting views on country, religion, society and photography arise between people who would otherwise never cross paths,” states Aperture’s description of the book, adding, “As it may be depicts a population in transition with integrity, commitment and respect.”

Depoorter joined Magnum Photos when she was 25 years old and became a full member in 2016.

As it may be is available in English, Dutch and French and includes a text by Belgian journalist Ruth Vandewalle.

-Sarah Stacke

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