I’ve always been a horse girl. For me those animals are the epitome of beauty and grace. I grew up in a Western country raised with the ideal that pets are a part of family, worthwhile and even status symbols. Also in legends and myths from other regions horses are described as precious, decent and sometimes canonized beings. A Beduin legend says: „Horse, thou art truly a creature without equal. All the treasures of the earth lie between thy eyes. Thou shalt carry my friends upon thy back. Thy saddle shall be the seat of prayers to me. Thou fliest without wings, and conquerest without sword.“
Outside my well-protected young world reality is much different. At least since I found a Facebook page named „Prince Fluffy Kareem“ it suddenly became clear to me. Where people are grinding poor why animals should have a better life? Shocking pictures of pinched horses, giant flesh wounds and ill-treated bones are showing a world behind post card pictures of the Pyramids of Giza. True life seemed to be very different by the photos of the PFK team.
Since 2011 Marte and her team are taking care of the Pyramid horses, camels and donkeys
Kareem – one of Marte’s first rescued horses and name giver of the project. He comes mentally and physically back to life but his scars will remain for ever.
They treat wounds, replace raddled halters and saddle pads
They also provide education among residents and horse owners and host those animals who hardly can stand upright on their hooves
Can we judge people who are hurting their animals in such way, letting them pull the carriage through deep desert sand up to 20 hours per day, barely feeding enough or removing the unfitting tack?
It would be the easiest way. But it’s not that simple
Most equestrians there don’t even know much about horses for example that the steppe inhabitant needs a lot more gras and hay than feed pellets and oat
They have never seen a horse running free through a green field
For me as a photographer this photo series was like a jump in at the deep end
Even though the toughest part was not to be confronted with endless misery and death
The much more challenging part was to capture the images from a neutral point of view without judging, dramatization or fake emotions
I wanted to show what life looks like in the streets of Giza and to let the viewer form his own opinion
It’s not a black and white world with good and bad guys
We need to understand the situation locally before we start talking about things we don’t know about
Meanwhile the PFK horse barn became bigger, donations from all over the world are helping to sponsor the project
And the local people?
Many of them are thankful for the help, a few are willing to learn and to improve the keeping. A grain of hope
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