Home Is Elsewhere is about looking for a home and not finding it, or finding something different from what you expected. It started in 2015 with my first trip to Kenya, the country my parents fled to after a war erupted in Somalia.
I was attempting to trace the family album. To recreate old pictures. I wanted my mother in her old bed. I wanted my mum and aunts next to each other. I wanted my uncle’s new wife and their newborn baby.
When I lost most of those images from my camera roll, I was left with something else. A collection of images about home that didn’t really feel like home. A picture of lovers overlooking the sea, children playing with sand on the beach, and a woman sitting on the curb of a service station.
In 2019 I went back to East Africa. I visited Tanzania and looked for Somali communities and Somali people. I found people that looked familiar but weren’t. I took their pictures anyway. They weren’t my family, but they could have been.
Amaal Said is a Danish-born Somali photographer and poet, based in London. Her photographs have been featured in Vogue, the Guardian and the New York Times. She is concerned with storytelling and how best she can connect with people to document their stories. She won Wasafiri Magazine’s New Writing Prize for poetry in 2015. She is a member of Octavia, poetry collective for womxn of colour, and is a former Barbican Young Poet.
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