Solo show Opens 6 Mar 2020, Twelve Gates Gallery, Philadelphia, PA until April 25 2020.
In “Undisciplined Pleasures, Vigilant Defiance,” I have radically reimagined the Sultan’s zanāna/harem comprised of African, Arab, Turkic, and Central Asian women in the so-called “City of Joy,” inspired by the miniature paintings in The Book of Delights. In a series of 10 editioned prints, I offer an alternative universe where assertive, empowered women, no longer in positions of servitude, engage each other. I introduce three historical female figures from the Indian Ocean’s East African, Arab, and South Asian worlds—Queen Bilqis, Razia Sultan, and Freedom Fighter Weyzero. All participate in undisciplined pleasures while defying injustices. Foods and medicines in all types of vessels, ignite and sustain pleasures. And when called to arms, the women brandish an array of weapons. Creating my own pantheon, I defy erasure, inscribe lost narratives, and revise histories. All the women-identified sheros rage into beauty with grace, grit and glee, no longer forgotten or marginalized.
NB: The 10 edition prints are printed on traditional handmade Wasli paper ~33(h) x 24(w) with deckled edges intact. We used an etching press; and infused the etching ink with a number of essential oils.