Last fall I was invited by Shira of the venerable Middle Eastern dance website Shira.net to write an article for her website. After several months of research, writing and revisions, the article went live last night!! Through the lens of art history and colonial history, I explore whether or not Orientalist painters like Jean-Léon Gérôme realistically depicted Middle Eastern dancers, and how photography played a crucial role in the creation of their works.
Jean-Léon Gérôme, Dance of the Almeh, 1863
Here’s an image discussed in the piece…to read the article, visit the main article page on Shira’s site.
While you’re there, check out the rest of the great content she has posted, from translations to dance history.