April 1, 2013 · 1 Comment
Soraya Nulliah. “Child Bride.” 2007. Mixed Media. 16 x 20 in.
Artist Soraya Nulliah is Indian, South African, Canadian, and American—all at once. She is of Indian origin, was born in and grew up in apartheid South Africa, immigrated to Alberta, Canada at twelve years old, and now lives in Colorado, USA with her husband and daughter. Her body of work is centered on portraits of women and girls of color and reflects a life spent existing in-between cultures and criss-crossing geographic boundaries. However, underneath her paintings’ vibrant, rich earth tones, lurks a deeper story. Nulliah endured a girlhood fraught with domestic violence. In both subtle and overt ways, her work is a response to the culture of silence that often plagues women and girls who are victimized by this kind of trauma. Many of Nulliah’s portraits are coupled with bold text that, for example, question, “Who are you nameless, faceless, girl?,” or declare, “her story matters,” and “claim my story.”
Here, Nulliah talks with LeRonn Phillip Brooks about the cultural influences in her work, her commitment to empowering women and girls, and the ways in which being a mother of a little girl has transformed her. —Ed. Read more
April 1, 2013 · Leave a Comment
Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post. Jyotsna Patadia, age 15, walks the salt pans of Little Rann of Kutch, India.
BY GRACE ANEIZA ALI | GIRLS ISSUE | SPRING, 2013
The image above is taken from The Washington Post‘s photojournalism series, “For Impoverished Girls, School Is Just a Dream,” by photojournalist Nikki Kahn, who followed the Patadia family on the salt pans of Little Rann of Kutch in India.
On these desolate salt pans of western India, as in much of the developing world, poverty and long-standing social customs bar many girls from attending school. Above, Jyotsna Patadia, age 15, one of those girls, walks a pot of tea out to her parents and uncle on the salt pans of Little Rann of Kutch. Jyotsna was forced to drop out of school at 10 years old to help her parents during the day as they mine the land for salt. With a $500 annual income, Jyotsna’s parents could not afford to send all three of their children to school. As the girl, she has to forfeit an education. “It’s easier to be a boy,” said Jyotsna. “They get to go to school.”
March 3, 2011 · Leave a Comment
Two boys playing near the Tulsi Pipes, Dharavi, Mumbai. Arne de Knegt for Artefacting Mumbai
By Grace Aneiza Ali
Alex White Mazzarella and Casey Nolan are digging their way through Dharavi, Mumbai—literally. Notoriously known as one of Asia’s “largest slum” and dubbed “Mumbai’s Shadow City,” Dharavi is home to over one million residents with a front row seat to the city’s encroaching real estate boom. Mazzarella and Nolan, US-based urban planners, are in India for three months to implement Artefacting Mumbai, a bold project that sets out to prove that one city’s trash is Dharavi’s art. They talk with Of Note about how they are using art to reinvent the way we define wealth.
January 4, 2010 · Leave a Comment
On December 8, 2009, Engendered’s Fashion Conscience 09 unveiled collections merging design with human rights from three of South Asia’s most progressive and cause-driven designers: Manish Arora, named one of the top 10 designers at Paris Fashion Week 2009, Zolaykha Sherzad, called a “cultural ambassador to Afghanistan” by Time Magazine, and Asher Jay, a Parsons Design School fashionista. Engendered is a trans-national arts and human rights organization focused on exploring the complex realities of gender and sexuality in the South Asian Diaspora. In tandem with their work and mission, the featured ‘POSITIVE,’ ‘ONE,’ and ‘LOVE’ fashion lines paid homage to people living with HIV and AIDS, gender non-conformists, and women who have survived violence and war. In addition to their merits as beautiful pieces of wearable art, the designs were also an empowering reminder of the ways in which art can be used and reinvented as tools of social change and transformation.
December 12, 2008 · Leave a Comment