When fighting erupted in Juba, South Sudan, last December between government forces and rebels loyal to an ousted vice president, it threatened to unravel everything the new country had built, both physically and culturally. One such cultural touchstone was Juba’s emerging fashion industry, led by designers such as Akuja de Garang. Her annual Festival of Fashion & Arts for Peace has drawn the attention of international press, which hailed her as one of South Sudan’s enterprising repats helping define the new country’s cultural identity.
(read full article Fashion in Sudan)

Images by Benjamin Lowy

Juba Arabic:  ‘Inta Minu’ - 'You are who?' 

Some might wonder why I decided to move to South Sudan - a dark and underdeveloped country lost in the deep bushes of Africa where war, poverty, corruption and diseases are commonplace.
I wanted to see it with my own eyes, shed some light on this country as unfortunately only few journalists make their way here and above all wanted to start a project on it.

After almost 3 months here, and a lot of thinking and talking, I’ve decided that it’s time to focus this project. My plan is to try and capture what South Sudan really is and in fact, it’s far from being only death and illness. 

It is a youth full of creativity, it is people with amazing stories to tell, it is people who are strong and eager to do things, it is a nation who has to do everything from complete scratch, a place where people have to learn how to live together after having fought side by side for decades.

So let’s start playing!