Profile

Maan Youssouf-Ahmed

Photographer

Maan Youssouf-Ahmed was born in 1985 in Djibouti, where she currently lives and works. She attended audiovisual and cinematography studies in Lille, France, in 2004. She graduated in 2008 and went back to Djibouti. She started filming and taking photos to capture her country and its routine, the essence of daily Djibouti. She pushed that photographic journey to Somaliland, in Northern Somalia. By the end of 2010 she went to Rome, Italy, attending one year of photography training. In January 2015 the Institut français of Djibouti staged her first photographic show entitled “Pièces detachées” (Spare parts), a series of photos on the gradually disappearing colonial and Ottoman architecture in the capital. In November 2015, her work “Not There Yet” has been shown at the exhibition Lumière d’Afrique in Paris, with 53 other African artists. It has been an opportunity for her to meet strong minded artists as the Ethiopian Aïda Muluneh and the Nigerian Emeka Okereke. In November 2016, she shown in Djibouti her last work "Passerelle vers le Futur" (Gateway to the Future). Maan’s work focuses on the duty of memory in Africa. For her, Africans must recover their forgotten history and traditions, annihilated by time and a “so” called global culture with a western single view angle. Here lies her objective, to value and appropriate an identity lost in the past universal movements. She wants to stand out from the whole and to be able to contribute to it through her differences.

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