At first, Moroccan artist Lalla Essaydi’s latest project looks like a fashion spread in Vogue magazine: Beautiful women with long, flowing black hair. Shimmering dresses melting into shiny backgrounds. Henna covering every inch of bare skin.

Essaydi’s work is decidedly not that. Darkness emanates from the sparkle.


They adorn every surface of Essaydi’s creations. The casings are woven into the costumes and threaded around the women.

Essaydi has never viewed herself as a militant. Instead, she has made art that is a constant investigation of the polarization between East and West — art that dispels crude stereotypes of Arab culture and women. She uses the female body to make her viewers acutely aware of a voyeuristic tradition in Western art.

For the full article and images from Lalla Essaydi's series, Bullets, please visit CNN