PAKISTANI AMERICAN ARTIST QINZA NAJM SPEAKS AGAINST GUN VIOLENCE IN AMERICAN SCHOOLS AND CULTURE OF INVISIBILITY
Saks Afridi and Qinza Najm, a photo from #DamnILookGood, which promotes tolerance for women who choose to wear the hijab. Photo: courtesy of the artists.
Wear A Hijab, Take A Selfie For The #DamnILookGood Art Project
You have to walk a mile in someone’s shoes to really understand them, the saying goes. In a twist on that idea, Pakistani-American artists Qinza Najm and Saks Afridi are inviting people to wear the traditional hijab veil to understand what it's like to be a Muslim. During a recent Brooklyn arts festival, reported the NY Daily News, they invited passersby to don a hijab, take a selfie and post the picture on social media with the hashtag #DamnILookGood. Their aim: to fight Islamophobia, to educate people on the various meanings of the hijab, and to promote tolerance for those who choose to wear a garment with multiple cultural meanings.
Solo exhibition at Time Square NYC blog coverage:
Above article published in White Hot Magazine Nov 2013 issues
Coming from Pakistan and seeing the world through travel exposed me to a unique mix of eastern and western cultures. This led to conflicting values which I have often done battle with and which, in turn, led me to art. Painting is meditative. It transports me to an unknown, magical place where time stops and the only things that exist are the smell of paint, the movement of the brushes, and the focus of the mind on the canvas creating its own reality. Art and culture combine to become an expression, and if you can visualize your thoughts and feelings you can attempt to articulate them.
The online PDF version is page 6-7