urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series

urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series

manuel alvarez diestro captures necropoli across egypt

 

A decade after his haunting photo series exposing dense urbanscapes juxtaposed with cemeteries around Hong Kong, Spanish photographer Manuel Alvarez Diestro returns with a new series unveiling tombs across the Egyptian desert. The ‘Egypt’s Necropolis’ series captures surreal and still compositions which depict parallels between the worlds of the living and the dead and the encompassing environments in which they co-exist. Engulfed in a sense of stillness, the photographs uncover similarities in forms and hierarchies between urban fabrics and funerary spaces, capturing how they seem to merge into one cohesive landscape.

urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series
Cairo’s South Necropolis | all images by Manuel Alvarez Diestro

 

 

capturing coexisting world’s of the living & the dead

 

‘Egypt’s Necropolis’ culminates Manuel Alvarez Diestro’s decade-long journey photographing tombs across Egypt, from small villages to the Pyramids of Giza. In Cairo’s city of the dead where most of the images were taken, the urban fabric is fully integrated with the necropolis. Capturing these fusions, the photographer juxtaposes the tombs against built residential and communal structures as well as infrastructures, unveiling similarities in color, shape, and hierarchy coming together as part of a same whole. In Diestro’s eyes these magnificent spaces with thousands of years of history stand in the desert as clear examples that highlight the cultural significance of these memorials in Egyptian society.

urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series
Cairo’s Necropolis

 

 

Overall, Manuel Alvarez Diestro’s compositions convey a sense of imprisonment and confinement, demonstrating that there is ‘no escape from man’s final destiny.’ In other locations such as Giza, El Minya, and El Fayum, the funerary spaces are isolated but still in dialogue with their surroundings. Moreover, a composition captures a cluster of memorial blocks set against the backdrop of the great pyramids, reinforcing Egypt’s legacy in funerary architecture since the beginning of human history. 

urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series
Funerary structure in El Fayum

urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series
Giza Pyramids

urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series
Cairo’s South Metroplis against Maadi’s skyscrapers

urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series
cemetery in Giza

urban fabrics fuse with cemeteries in egyptian desert in manuel alvarez diestro’s photo series
Cairo’s East Necropolis against ultra dense housing

egypts necropolis 11
El Minya’s City of the Dead

egypts necropolis 8
Cairo’s South Necropolis traversed by recently built freeway

egypt-necropolis-manuel-alvarez-diestro-designboom-3

 

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surreal view of South Necropolis in Cairo
surreal view of South Necropolis in Cairo
Cairo's South Necropolis
Cairo's South Necropolis
close up of a tomb against a wooden structure
close up of a tomb against a wooden structure

project info:

 

name: Egypt’s Necropolis

photographer: Manuel Alvarez Diestro

 

 

designboom has received this project from our DIY submissions feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

 

edited by: ravail khan | designboom

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