Marli Shamir collection, EEPA 2013-009

Summary
Collection ID:
EEPA.2013-009
Creators:
Shamir, Marli
Dates:
1966-1976
Languages:
Multiple languages
Languages represented in this collection include English, Hebrew and German.
Physical Description:
33 negatives (photographic)
color
35mm
1790 negatives (photographic)
black and white
120mm
1,519 color slides
35mm
Repository:
Collection dates from 1966 to 1976 and includes 1,817 black and white negatives, 1,519 35mm color slides, several hundred prints, and manuscript materials. Locations include Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire, Gabon, Israel, Mali, and Niger and depict agriculture, architecture, especially mosques, landscapes, marketplaces, masquerade and musical performances, sculptures, and textiles. Peoples depicted include the Bambara, Bella, Bozo, Dogon, Fulani, Gao, Mandingo, San, Songhai, and Tuarag peoples.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
This collection dates from 1966 to 1976 and includes 1,817 black and white negatives, 1,519 35mm color slides, several hundred prints, and manuscript materials. Images were taken in Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire, Gabon, Israel, Mali, and Niger and depict agriculture, architecture, especially mosques, landscapes, marketplaces, masquerade and musical performances, sculptures, textiles. Peoples depicted include the Bambara, Bella, Bozo, Dogon, Fulani, Gao, Mandingo, San, Songhai, and Tuarag peoples.

Arrangement
Arrangement
Arranged in four series, according to format.
  • Series 1: Negatives
  • Series 2: Slides
  • Series 3: Photographic Prints
  • Series 4: Manuscript Materials

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Marli Shamir (1919-2016) was an Israeli photographer known for her extensive work in Mali, the Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso from 1966-1973. Born and raised in Berlin, Shamir started studying photography during her teenage years and took photography classes at the Contempora Lehrateliers für neue Werkkunst (1934-1937).
In 1938, she was forced to immigrate to Israel where she initially lived in a kibbutz. From 1941-1943, she worked at the mineralogy department of the Weizmann Institute in Rehovot, and then opened her own studio in Jerusalem in 1945. In 1953, she married Meir Shamir, a former Israeli Diplomat-Ambassador, and from 1966-1973 she lived successively in Mali, Gabon and Cote d'Ivoire. She held a particular fascination with architecture, monuments, mosques, arts and habitants.
During her stay in Mali, she met Pascal James Imperato with whom she wrote the article "Bokolanfini Mud Cloth of the Bamana of Mali" (African Arts, 1970). In 1976, she produced the exhibition
Sahel
at the Israeli museum in Jerusalem, which focused on the rural and urban architecture and people of the Sahel. The exhibition toured in Europe later that year. From 1977-1981, she lived in Strasbourg, where she focused on documenting the new style of architecture in Mali. Her work on this project is stored at the Center of Documentation in Strasbourg.
In 2005, a book devoted to her photographs from Mali was published by the Grandvaux French Edition House. The National Poet of Mali, Albakaye Ousmane Kounta, collaborated with Shamir on a book of poetry,
Djenney-Ferey –La terre habitee
(published by Grandaux, 2007), which is illustrated with Shamir's photographs. Shamir passed away in 2016 at the age of 93.

Administration
Processing Information
Metadata compiled by Hannah Storch. Negatives and slides were digitized in 2019. Series 3 and 4 are currently being processed and are not available online.
Author
Eden Orelove
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Purchased, 2013

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Use
Permission to reproduce images from the Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives must be obtained in advance. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Conditions Governing Access
Use of original records requires an appointment. Contact Archives staff for more details.
Preferred Citation
Marli Shamir collection, EEPA 2013-009, Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Related Materials
The Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives also holds another collection of Shamir's photographs, EEPA 1995-025.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Djenné (Mali) Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mali Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ivory Coast Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Burkina Faso Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
San (African people) Culture Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Dogon (African people) Culture Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Negatives (photographic) Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photographic print Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Slides (Photography) Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Timbuktu (Mali) Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mali, -- Bamako Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Niger Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Fulani Culture Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mopti (Mali) Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Israel Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives, National Museum of African Art
National Museum of African Art
P.O. Box 37012
MRC 708
Washington, DC 20013-7012
elisofonarchives@si.edu
http://africa.si.edu/collection/eliot-elisofon-photographic-archives/