Peter Sanders, World-Renowned Photographer, Coming to Jeddah

Ismaeel Nakhuda, Arab News
Publication Date: 
Mon, 2008-01-21 03:00

JEDDAH, 21 January 2008 — One of the world’s most renowned Muslim photographers, Peter Sanders, who has spent over 30 years capturing breathtaking pictures of the Islamic world, is holding a two-day exhibition of unique photographs starting Wednesday at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI).

Peter Sanders, also known as Abdul Azeem after his conversion to Islam, will exhibit an impressive collection of photographs at the event, which is to be held on Wednesday and Thursday. Thirty-eight photographs — from Sanders’ collection “In the Shade of the Tree” — will be shown on screen using a projector with the photographer providing his personal commentary to the pictures.

The event, which will be held at the JCCI’s Sheikh Ismail Abu Dawud Hall, has been organized by the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY). “The exhibition is aimed at projecting Islam in a positive light,” said Dr. Huda Fatani, one of the organizers. “Peter Sanders is a world-acclaimed photographer and has held this exhibition in many countries. His mission is to represent Islam in a better way. It is not everyday that Peter Sanders comes to town,” she added.

The exhibition, which begins at 7 p.m. and ends at around 9 p.m. on both days, is invite-only on Wednesday and open to all members of the public on Thursday. Special arrangements have been made for women. Dr. Muhammad Badahdah, WAMY assistant secretary-general, will open the exhibition.

Peter Sanders is celebrated for capturing the many wondrous and exotic faces of the Muslim world. Born in London, he began his career in the mid-1960s covering many of the pop stars of that era, including Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones and The Doors. Sanders has documented the Haj on numerous occasions — the first in 1971. These images, in recognition of their rareness, appeared in the Sunday Times Magazine, the Observer color supplement, Paris Match, Stern and Europa magazines.

Between 1989 and 1993, Sanders documented the expansion of the Two Holy Mosques in Makkah and Madinah. He has hosted exhibitions on the Kingdom at the Saudi Arabian Embassy in London and has also worked with the Saudi in-flight magazine, Ahlan Wasahlan.

Sanders’ book, “In the Shade of the Tree: A Photographic Odyssey Through the Muslim World,” published in 2002, is a collection of images of Muslim life from around the globe. The book includes shots of mosques — including Beijing’s 1,000-year-old Niujie Mosque and the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem — and astonishing portraits of individuals. In 2006, Sanders launched the “Art of Integration” project in Egypt, which then traveled to Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait. It is now showing in 25 different countries.

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