Inspired by her Algerian roots, Michèle plays with proportion and fit, making her style experimental, earthy and avant-garde.
Is that why the men stare at her? Because she looks different? Or because she is scantily dressed by their standards?
Odd when you notice that they openly sell belly dancer outfits in their shops.
Many elements of Michèle’s look aren’t too far removed from traditional Arab garb and style.
So, why is how she’s put her look together worthy of gawking at?
Notice the man in front dressed in a traditional Arab thobe, which may have, at some point, served as inspiration for some of Rick Owens designs.
READ: Arabs At The Met Gala
The man looks back at Michele, his expression hidden from us, the white of his thobe other than Michele, acts as a focal point in the photo.
How does he look at her? With curiosity? Judgment? Irritation or is he simply observing her for her paradoxes?
In a way Michele, who was born and raised in France but is of Algerian origin, has accidently personified in this photo the feeling many immigrant Arabs have when they return to their motherland.
The feeling of both being familiar and an other.
Does being a fashion forward version of the Arab aesthetic make you an anomaly? Does it make you less or more of Arab or just a different kind of Arab.
There probably isn’t an answer.