Quote/Unquote: Racism in Florence

In a scathing article about Italy’s behaviour towards the first black, african, female senator, the Florentine spoke with Mark Abouzeid about Racism in Italy:

“Italian natives are not the only ones with the race problem, however. Florence-based Lebanese-American photojournalist Mark Abouzeid, who has worked closely with immigrants here, says we’re all guilty. ‘Even we stranieri have a stratified view of the community,’ he argues. ‘Florentines and the majority of transplants to Florence are xenophobic, afraid of “different.” Continue reading

A Night at the Muscat Festival 2014, Oman

Discover the beauty of Muscat, meet the friendly Omani people and join in the celebrations at the 2014 Muscat Festival.  Dancers from India, Singapore, Mexico, Palestine and more.  See the colors, sounds and tastes of this marvelous event.

“Dubbed Oman’s biggest cultural and historical event, the Muscat Festival is the sultanate’s exhibition of local culture, art, consumer goods and services. The festival has a special flavour – a mixture of old and new, history and progression – from folk poetry and dance evenings, to lectures on solar energy, a chocolate festival and fashion shows. Some 1.5 million people from the region visit the month-long event, which can be seen at various venues around the city including the Omani Heritage Village, Seeb Beach and Al Qurum National Park where the most popular happenings take place.” WorldGuide.eu

Mark Abouzeid spent a week with performers and artisans participating in the 2014 Muscat International Folklore festival. Countries from around the globe and Omani tribesman from around the country mix at this important month long event exchanging aspects and knowledge of the unique cultural traditions and heritage. Join him in this ongoing series highlighting some of the key activities and personalities.

UCI Road World Championships in Florence | Day 1

Day 1 | Omega Pharma Quickstep won the Elite Men’s Team Time Trial by a mere 0.81 seconds.

 

The team set a time of 1:04:16.81 for the  57.2km course.

Tom Steels (directeur sportif of Omega Pharma Quick Step): “Was this a revenge for the Tour de France? No, but we know how it feels like to lose at the very last minute. Our athletes  have been amazing, they won on character rather than on force”

 Tony Martin (Omega Pharma Quick Step): “Hearing that Orika overtook us worked like a wake up call, Tom really pushed us to do out best. In the end there were only four of us left, but in the city centre, with all those turns, it was probably better. What will happen on Wednesday? Now I know the course, I’m more self confident. My rivals? Cancellara and Wiggins above all”

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The 2013 UCI Road World Championships are taking place in Florence, Tuscany, Italy, between 22 and 29 September 2013.

The Championships consist of 12 events for elite, under-23 and junior cyclists. It is the 86th Road World Championships, the 13th in Italy and the first time that the event will take place in Tuscany. The finish of the different events is in Florence. The near towns of Lucca, Montecatini Terme and Pistoia will host the start of the events.

Taste temptations in Sicily

Down a small alley off the main pedestrian drag, lies an orgasm of fish waiting for the next reveler.

 

Bouquet of fishI will admit that I do like to eat fish! This may not seem like much of a declaration to most but let me add that few of my friends have ever seen me order seafood in a restaurant. The reason is simple…I like fish so much that unless it is fresh caught and expertly cooked…I would rather avoid it.

The sad truth is that even by the sea, you often cannot find a truly fresh and delicious fish meal. Experiments in nouvelle fish cuisine leave me flat while basic fish fair can be quite bland. Only a truly expert chef can balance the tightrope between imagination and simplicity when it comes to fish.

This is all true unless you happen to be next to me as I write this sitting under refined umbrellas watching the passing fashion parade of the local teenagers as your fixation with your neighbors appetizer selection becomes embarrassing. Continue reading

Boudoir Photography, behind the scenes video

Mark Abouzeid and LanZalibre produced this behind the scenes video of their work on Boudoir Photography shoots.  A private view into the closed studio.

 

Un boudoir è una stanza da letto privata di una signora, un salotto o uno spogliatoio; il termine deriva da verbo francese “bouder” che significa “mettere il broncio”.

Storicamente, il boudoir formava una suite privata di una stanza di una signora, per il bagno e per lo spogliatoio ed era adiacente alla camera da letto.

In un periodo successivo venne usato come un salotto privato e per altre attività come il ricamo o per divertenti incontri intimi.La fotografia ed il video di Boudoir hanno come scopo la seduzione, accendere l’mmaginazione di qualcuno.

Anti-Immigrant Attacks Spur Florence Artists to Action

Henry Ridgwell of VOA News recently visited the city to interview Mark Abouzeid on his work to combat racism.

 

The Italian city of Florence is known for its art and beauty. Its immigrant community is less well known. But following a series of racist attacks on African migrants in Florence, a group of artists is highlighting the contribution of foreigners to Florentine culture, past and present.

From Voice of America:

FLORENCE — The Italian city of Florence is known for its art and beauty. Its immigrant community is less well known. But following a series of attacks on African migrants in Florence, a group of artists is highlighting the contribution of foreigners to Florentine culture, past and present.

With its stunning architecture and countless galleries, Florence has long been at the heart of Western art.  It is the birthplace of the Renaissance, the flowering of Western artistic endeavor that began in the 14th century.

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The Crossing, a slow ferry to Tunis

A solitary Sufi, an Alaskan elder and a Buddhist nomad board a Ferry from Genova to Tunis. This is not a joke!

 

A slow ferry to Tunis.

The three of us are traveling to Tunisia in the hopes of finding something significant, something unexpected and, most of all, something memorable.

Our project goal is to capture the oral histories of maritime cultures around the Mediterranean, a task which has taken us to numerous countries over the past two years. We have flown, sailed, trained and driven from discovery to discovery…until now.

Continue reading