Mohamed Mahdy is a visual storyteller based in Alexandria, Egypt whose work concentrates on marginalized communities in Egypt. With a focus on social and cultural issues, Mahdy immerses himself in what he calls buried and unseen communities in order to share their stories with new audiences.
His project Moon Dust documents a residential area called Wadi El Qamar (Moon Valley), located next to the Alexandria Portland Cement factory. Here, nearly 30,000 inhabitants suffer from health complications due to the dust from the cement factories. Mahdy produces black and white photographs of the community that evoke a raw sense of intimacy. He juxtaposes portraits of children playing around the factory with striking images of dust-coated surfaces, x-rays of children’s contaminated lungs, and the large expanses of the looming cement factory overlooking residents’ homes. Through his work, Mahdy tells the story not only of the residents’ lived reality, but also their decade of hard work to bring attention to these environmental and health violations.
He has exhibited in Cairo at the 25 Youth Salon in Cairo, in the Paris Biennale, twice with the Ian Parry Scholarship in London and with Photoville in New York. His most recent exhibition was in Hamburger Bahnhof Museum - Berlin, part of the exhibition ‘Take me to the River.’ In 2017he was selected by the Magnum Foundation to participate in the Arab Documentary Photography Program. In 2018 he was named by The New York Times Lens blog as one of 12 emerging photographers. In 2021 he was selected as a Magnum Fellow for Social Justice. Mahdy is currently working toward the completion of two diplomas at DMJX, the Danish School of Media and Journalism.