Tammam Hunaidy: The Face that You See, the Face that I See

Selected poems by Tammam Hunaidy, translated by Catherine Cobham, with photographs by Newsha Tavakolian.

Tammam Hunaidy’s poems are as comforting as they are unsettling. Mixing irony with brutal honesty, they restore a sense of order to a life touched by the pain of exile and death. Hunaidy, born in Syria, left his country soon after the beginning of the Syrian uprising – first to Beirut, then to Egypt, Sweden, and Turkey, where he currently lives with his wife and daughter.

Hunaidy’s poetry is accompanied by 33 photographs by the Iranian artist and photojournalist, Newsha Tavakolian. While the exact location of her landscapes and still lifes remains uncertain, they were taken at a variety of places across Asia, Africa, and Europe that people have been forced to leave in recent years, or have passed through while escaping war, violence, repression, and poverty. Tavakolian’s photos conjure an air of profound melancholy and, like Hunaidy’s poems, offer brief glimpses of beauty in the everyday.

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