Lebanon

A girl and her room

Rania Matar

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01


A girl and her room


A Girl and Her Room was inspired by my oldest daughter, then 15, who was no longer a carefree child.  She was shifting into adulthood incrementally before my eyes.  After photographing her with her girlfriends, I realized I wanted to capture each young woman by herself in her own environment: her bedroom.  The room was a metaphor, an extension of the girl, but also the girl seemed to be part of the room, to fit in just like everything else in the material and emotional space she created.


While I initially focused on teenage girls in the United States, I eventually expanded the project to include girls from the other world I experienced myself as a young woman: the Middle East. This is how this project became personal to me. The beauty, dreams, vulnerability and strength of these young women, regardless of place, background and religion, were beautifully universal and deeply moving.


Being with those young women in the privacy of their world gave me a unique peek into their private lives and their inner selves. They sensed that I was not judging them and became an active part of the project. Their frankness and generosity in sharing access was a privilege that they have extended to me but also to all the viewers of this work.

 



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Rania MatarRania Matar (Lebanon, 1964). Originally trained as an architect at the American University of Beirut and at Cornell University, she studied photography at the New England School of Photography and the Maine Photographic Workshops. Her work focuses on girls and women. She documents her life through the lives of those around her, focusing on the personal and the mundane in an attempt to portray the universal within the personal. Her work has won several awards, is part of several museum and private collections, has been featured in numerous publications, and exhibited widely in the U.S. and internationally. Visit her website: raniamatar.com
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01


A girl and her room


A Girl and Her Room was inspired by my oldest daughter, then 15, who was no longer a carefree child.  She was shifting into adulthood incrementally before my eyes.  After photographing her with her girlfriends, I realized I wanted to capture each young woman by herself in her own environment: her bedroom.  The room was a metaphor, an extension of the girl, but also the girl seemed to be part of the room, to fit in just like everything else in the material and emotional space she created.


While I initially focused on teenage girls in the United States, I eventually expanded the project to include girls from the other world I experienced myself as a young woman: the Middle East. This is how this project became personal to me. The beauty, dreams, vulnerability and strength of these young women, regardless of place, background and religion, were beautifully universal and deeply moving.


Being with those young women in the privacy of their world gave me a unique peek into their private lives and their inner selves. They sensed that I was not judging them and became an active part of the project. Their frankness and generosity in sharing access was a privilege that they have extended to me but also to all the viewers of this work.

 



02 03 04 05 06 07 0708 09 10 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36

 

Rania MatarRania Matar (Lebanon, 1964). Originally trained as an architect at the American University of Beirut and at Cornell University, she studied photography at the New England School of Photography and the Maine Photographic Workshops. Her work focuses on girls and women. She documents her life through the lives of those around her, focusing on the personal and the mundane in an attempt to portray the universal within the personal. Her work has won several awards, is part of several museum and private collections, has been featured in numerous publications, and exhibited widely in the U.S. and internationally. Visit her website: raniamatar.com
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