Matriarchal, 2022

Authoritarian leaders are the pioneers of the selfie in all its potential forms: Airbrushed photo portraits, propaganda murals weaving history and fantasy, sculptures and frescoes… Today, the age of social media has produced a new global breed of self-obsessed social dictators in a phenomenon that I like to call megalomedia. Anyone with a phone can participate in shameless self-aggrandizement with free photo apps that can polish, beautify and even flip genders.

With that in mind, I wanted to combine these parallel phenomena by processing iconic images of male leaders past and present through these phone photo apps to imagine a world run by women – especially in the MENA region where we have yet to see a female ruler emerge in contemporary times.

But what would a matriarchal system look like? Would leadership (or dictatorship) be more benevolent? And more importantly, would their propaganda look the same?

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