This book contains haunting and lyrical photographs of the theater of rural Egyptian life.In this beautiful art book, award-winning American photographer Ann Parker records and celebrates life as it passes along a road through a typical village in the Egyptian Nile Delta in the early twenty-first century. But her photographs are t mere documents of a specific time and place; they transcend both as she captures timeless moments in an eternal world and presents us with a potentially infinite and hauntingly memorable pageant of living tableaux, silhouetted against the late afteron sky.Day after day, in the same few hours of the lowering sun, from the same single vantage point on a wooden bench outside the house of the village mayor, Parker sat patiently waiting for figures and events to come together in what Henri Cartier-Bresson called the decisive moment on the road in front of her, framed by the trunks of two trees and curtained by their delicate branches. The result is this extraordinary collection of images-one hundred sepia prints filled with the comings and goings of the village's people, animals, and vehicles. Like a spectator seated in a theater, Ann Parker watched the telling procession pass by on the road. She has succeeded in documenting with artistry what remains of a rich traditional life in one of the most historic farming areas of the world, and with this exquisite book in hand we too may enjoy the privilege of sitting quietly beside her on the mayor's bench.
ANN PARKER graduated from Yale University with a BFA degree. She has produced over 50 one-woman exhibitions in museums and galleries in the United States, South America, the Dominican Republic, Europe, Australia, and Egypt. Her photographs can be found in major collections including the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Center for Creative Photography, and the San Antonio Museum of Art. Twilight Visions is her second book on Egypt; the first was the award-winning Hajj Paintings: Folk Art of the Great Pilgrimage (The Smithsonian Press, 1997). Among her other books are Los Ambulantes: The Itinerant Photographers of Guatemala and Molas: Folk Art of the Cuna Indians. Ann Parker also writes, lectures and has been widely published in such magazines as American Heritage, American Photographer, Art in America, Aperture, Life, Natural History, Smithsonian, and Stern. She lives in Egypt with her husband, Hamdi Abdel Shaheed.