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Unfamiliar folds of expression

I am living the life of a migrant who left her country almost fourteen years back. Luckily, I got a chance to travel and meet many people who migrated or lived as immigrants. After meeting them, I realized that this moving step affects them somehow, regardless of their nationalities. Some are familiar with this fact and happily accepted the situation because of the many push and pull factors. But for some, it is a roller coaster journey. It was easy for me to understand their emotions and pain-points, as I was also driving on the same path.


In today’s graphical world, I realized that now people have social media to raise their voices or share their thoughts and emotions regarding any topic. When an issue happens, I also notice people have some signs or symbols to put as their social media profiles to become a part of a movement by registering their voice against it. This made me realize that there are so many issues happening to immigrants, and they have no common symbol or archetypes to register themselves. That’s where my journey started to form a narrative and raise my voice through my visuals.


This creative journey was not easy for me, especially when I had to begin. The hardest thing was to find the answer to how and from where to start. The reality was that I was coming from a total different background. My culture, values, language and skin color was all different. But I also realized that though this part of the world is unfamiliar to me and vice versa, being humans we also share a lot of similarities. 


While living in a different cultural environment, I felt closeness when I heard similar words, either in their pronunciation or meaning. When I mingled with people, I realized they have the same emotions and attitudes towards relations and life. They face the same issues as many of us, which made me realize that we are one, though our looks have created divisions. And our interpersonal interactions are also influenced by our social and political structures or policies, which create boundaries among us and create differences.


As a printmaker, I am used to seeing my proofs or prints only in black and white, so it was always tough for me to jump into colors. I broke this traditional ritual, added yellow with black as a caution sign into my art pieces, and moved from conventional printmaking to 3D artworks, which I prepared in different acrylic colors to make them stand out and create interest.


Later, I realized that to spread my message among people and to push the narrative further, I have to create a stronger bond with my audience so that they can relate well. Therefore alongside the visual work, I have also recorded video performances. 


My project is challenging the approach to keep marginalized people in the margins. My images and performances illustrate the human struggle and show that we need to combat racism and represent humanity to reclaim our existence to achieve justice in the present world.

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