Visual Voices Colloquium is the Professional Lecture Series of the School of Art and Design and represents a window into the professional world of art and design. Speakers are chosen with faculty guidance to represent leading and emerging talented practitioners, as well as artists whose work lies beyond the subject areas of the program offerings. This is an edited recording of the live conversation with Bahia Shehab on September 15, 2022, hosted on Zoom.
Bahia Shehab is a multidisciplinary artist, designer, political activist, and historian whose work focuses on the interaction and intersection of modern identity and ancient cultural heritage. Her imaginative combination of calligraphy and Islamic art history produced cutting-edge, beautiful, impactful street art during the Arab Spring and continues to inform her work as an educator and designer.
Having always been concerned with identity and preserving cultural heritage, she investigates art history to reinterpret contemporary Arab politics, feminist discourse and social issues. Her culturally oriented work enables her to use history as a means to better understand the present and find solutions for the future.
Bahia believes that art may be employed for the purposes of social change and has explored this phenomenon through her artwork, which focuses on socially charged themes such as the Arab identity and women’s rights. Her research is largely concerned with understanding the Arabic letters and has been preoccupied with Arabic calligraphy in much of her work. Her work has been displayed in exhibitions around the world and she has received several awards and recognition for her achievements.
Learn more about Visual Voices Lectures on the website: https://art.gmu.edu/visual-voices.