As part of Creative Dissent: Arts of the Arab World Uprisings, we had two donations to our permanent collection.
The first are three stencils from Bahia Shehab, an Egyptian artist and TED fellow from her “A Thousand Times No” series. From left to right they say “No to book burning, No to military rule, and No to beating women.”
She says of her work:
They’re not a thousand general nos. I can assign a purpose, a message, to each one of these nos. So: “No for a new pharaoh,” “No to beating women,” and so on. So I started using the nos like ammunition. I designed stencils with them, and sprayed them in the streets.
Below is a TED talk she gave about the project:
We also received an original Willis From Tunis piece from Nadia Khiari. Here, a revolutionary cat representing a young left-wing secularist holds a banner that reads “Live Free or Die” while he is beaten to death by a bearded Salafi screaming “Die!”
Nadia began drawing Willis during 2011 as revolt was underway in Tunis:
I began to draw that evening as a way of releasing something inside me. I drew to release the tension for me and my friends.
Below is an interview with Nadia, where she discusses her work and her motivation for creating Willis:
Creative Dissent is on display until February 9, 2014 in the Lower Level Gallery.