Mohamed Bourouissa’s Périphérique – Front row seat to Parisian ghetto

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Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - Le groupe, 2007, C-print, 90x120cm
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Le groupe, 2007

Published: January 6, 2017

Last updated:

Mohamed Bourouissa’s Parisian suburb photos

Mohamed Bourouissa’s photos, like those of many photojournalists work, feature impoverished, stylish young African and Arab men and women, some who are immigrants while others are the children of immigrants, living in suburban housing projects on the peripheries of Paris. His works depicts the tensions and the many issues that have implications for the daily lives of young people who live in France’s suburb, or the metropolis’s peripheries also known as Banlieue1. The photographs, however, are posed, which is where the inspiration of the classical painting comes in, motionlessly elegant. His gripping images have used documentary-style content combined with formal compositions.


His work looks at socio-political issues that are prevalent in the lives of disenfranchised youth, seeming to call out on the audience to remove any rose-colored glasses and address the problems head-on. The work, while stunning, creates an uncomfortable reminder for those who ignore the periphery, for those who seem to forget that all is not well, serving to make the truth unavoidable. While some may turn on their heal to run to a nearby overpriced coffee shop where they can hide in the bliss of ignorance, where others may be inspired to address the social issues that this work forces the audience to see.

Mohamed Bourouissa’s inspiration

Mohamed Bourouissa’s pictures are expressive declarations pointing at the ethical fallout of photojournalism, focusing on the problematic power relations that take place within the photographic medium in addition to the voyeuristic nature of photojournalism.

About Mohamed Bourouissa

The Algerian-born, Paris-based photographer Mohamed Bourouissa was born in 1978. His work has been presented and featured in an extensive number of solo and group exhibitions at venues including the Centre Pompidou, the Palais de Tokyo, the Palazzo Grassi – François Pinault Foundation in Venice, the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, the MAXXI in Rome, the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Finnish Museum of Photography of Helsinki, the Fotomuseum in Rotterdam, and many more impressive venues.


Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - Carré Rouge, 2005
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Carré Rouge, 2005

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - L’impasse, 2007
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, L’impasse, 2007

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - La fenêtre, 2005
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, La fenêtre, 2005

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - La Morsure, 2007
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, La Morsure, 2007

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - La rencontre, 2005
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, La rencontre, 2005

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - Le téléphone, 2006
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Le téléphone, 2006

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - Le Reflet, 2007
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Le Reflet, 2007

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique, Sans titre (metro), 2007
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Sans titre (metro), 2007

Mohamed Bourouissa – Périphérique,
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, 2007

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - La Butte, 2007, 90x120cm
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, La Butte, 2007

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - La République, 2006, Paris, France
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, La République, 2006

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - Le Miroir, 2006
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Le Miroir, 2006

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - Le poing, 2006
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Le poing, 2006

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - Le Toit, 2007
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Le Toit, 2007

Mohamed Bourouissa - Périphérique - Le Couloir, 2007
Mohamed BourouissaPériphérique, Le Couloir, 2007

All images by Mohamed Bourouissa/ unless otherwise noted.

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