Film of a garden party in Alexandria, Egypt c1920s

 

I found this reel of black-and-white film at a flea market in Alexandria, Egypt in the mid-1990s and though I have always wanted to know what it depicts I have never been able to watch it.  The film was undamaged but encrusted with dust and debris, which would make projection difficult; anyway, I do not have the requisite projector.  But the frames that I can unspool intrigue: they show what appears to be a garden party in the 1920s — in the detail below you can see couples dancing in the foreground and, in the left of the frame, a woman sitting on a bench wearing a flapper-style hat — among the European community in Alexandria.  In fact, even the setting is speculative: it could be anywhere, though the garden party is an archetypal pre-revolutionary Alexandrian scene.  Like the lost lifestyle it depicts, the film seems near at hand and yet still inaccessible.

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One Response to “Film of a garden party in Alexandria, Egypt c1920s”

  1. Westmore says:

    Sean,  We have 14 large rolls of 16 mm. film that Don’s grandfather and father took on two trips around the world (including Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Europe) in the 1920’s, and  we have the journal that Don’s father wrote along the way.  We’ve never been able to watch the films, but now we have two 16 mm. projectors, and one of them is an antique. Some housebound snowy day, we’ll be looking at them… if you’re here, we can look at yours, too. It looks very interesting…  Don’s father’s films are largely buildings, which never change. I would much rather have pictures of people and their clothing! Adrienne

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