Amina Benbouchta

Delectable creatures appearing in luxurious environments, the women of Amina Benbouchta are tokens of attraction, characterised by their faceless anonymity. Auto-portraits of the Moroccan artist, the beauties mimic poses of objects surrounding them, all while holding mirrors, utensils, lamps to mask their traits. They become objects themselves—masked individuals internally struggling to escape, to face their lives, to break free of gender politics. Contrasting with their distressing realities is the imaginary universe wrapping them in a comforting surreality.   
Sans Titre 04, 2015, Print on Fine Art Baryta Paper

In the featured work, Benbouchta’s black velvet dress, adorned by white embroideries signifies a certain social status, while the dark mask covering her face traps her identity. She stands on a pile of dead leaves, surrounded by potted shrubs and plants that transform her into a tree. Lying at her feet, the slicing teeth of a deadly trap raise questions: is the trap guarding her? Is it impeding her from moving out of the forest ? The ambiguities multiply in Benbouchta’s photographic works, provoking a visual dialogue of perceptions that leads to reflections on confinement, threat, and limitations extant in our societies.  

Amina Benbouchta is currently part of Traces of the Future, a collective exhibition of contemporary Moroccan artists at the Marrakesh Museum of Photography and Visual Arts.

Article co-posted on Pavilion33
Image courtesy of Sabrina Amrani Gallery 

Find out more about Amina Benbouchta here