Jason Larkin is a photographer whose work I already introduced writing about Cairo Divided – The Escape of the Elites. He has done a lot of projects in Egypt, Cairo particularly, but each one of them seems so fresh and inspiring. His work never feels worn-out, it never screams been there – done that. There’s always a buzz of excitement and discovery which just goes to show how Cairo is a true city of stories, a city of diversity, and a well of inspiration. And Larkin is great at capturing that.
Larkin’s project, Souq El Gomma, captures Middle East’s largest informal market gathering.
” ‘A city within a city, built in the morning light, and which disappears with the last of the day. An infinite and intertwining network of commerce colliding for just a few hours a week.’
Invisible City, Italo Calvino
This story is an exploration of the myriad people, objects and spaces that make up Cairo’s Souq El-Gomma, the Middle East’s largest informal market gathering. Every Friday this trading metropolis materialises, with no formal direction or control, no one idea and ultimately no boundaries, it encompasses the aperture between the living city and the city of the dead. Colonised by the economically marginalised the trade is in the detritus of the city, here Cairo’s flotsam and jetsam is sorted, salvaged and sold on. This organic and dynamic entity offers up a window into the lives of other people and more fundamentally a window into the life of the city itself.
Commissioned by The National M Magazine. Published in Sowar Magazine, Ojopedez.”
/all images © Jason Larkin/
For more of Larkin’s great photography, visit his official website.