Moath Al-Ofi, Searching for Medina
As an artist and explorer from Saudi Arabia, Moath Al-Ofi’s focus is on his home city of Medina; showcasing its heritage, landscape, and people, in a contemporary and conceptual way
Moath, 33, strives to highlight the beauty and treasures of Medina and the change that its residents are facing through new developments. Medina is a city in the Hejaz region in Saudi Arabia and the city contains several Islamic and historic sites, and what Moath shows is the harsh contrast between such beautiful historic sites, barren deserts and abandoned spaces that are marked for demolition.
“In a fast [paced] era, we really need to keep in touch with our original identity and culture, as that is what eventually keeps us unique as a nation and individuals,” he said.
Moath is the founder of Almthba, a non-profit multidisciplinary studio that deepens and enriches researcher’s and academic’s understandings of the region of Medina through cultural and architectural tours and the promotion of a variety of arts. “In three words,” Moath said, summarizing what Almthba is, “Research, tours, and art.”
With a style of photography that can be described as environmental and contemporary, it makes sense that Moath is also the co-founder of Erth, a team that is on a mission to discover the beauty and heritage of Saudi Arabia through aerial photography. By exploring, flying, and documenting, Moath has photographed Saudi Arabia in ways that are geographically distinctive because his photos offer an out of the ordinary perspective, compared to the standard you would get from shooting on the ground.
The abundance of places to explore is what keeps Moath inspired. He explained that, “Knowing that there are things and places to enjoy and discover is always a joyful thrill.”