Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Fabrice Monteiro | Signares

Photo © Fabrice Monteiro-All Rights Reserved
I'm always interested in the intersection of fashion and travel photography. Exotic and beautiful women in exotic dress...what's not to like? One of my modules during my photo expedition to Vietnam will include a model shoot in Hoi An....and I really look forward to it.

In that vein, I feature the lovely fashion-travel-cultural work of Fabrice Monteiro, which showcases gorgeous women taking the roles of Signares. According to Wikipedia, Signares was the name for the French-African women of the island of GorĂ©e in French Senegal during the 18th and 19th centuries.

These women held some power in a patriarchal system throughout the Atlantic Slave Trade, and over time amassed considerable power in trade and wealth. Some owned land as well as slaves. European merchants and traders, such as the Portuguese, settled on the African coastal societies inhabited by Signares and would marry them in order to benefit from their connections and wealth.

Fabrice Monteiro, living and working in Dakar, is a Belgian-Benin photographer who, while an industrial engineer by training, adopts the style of photo-reportage and fashion photography. He specializes in Africa, and being of a cultural mix himself, favors subject matters that provide the same mix.