Al-Mutanabbi
Street Broadsides
  Al-Mutanabbi Street Coalition project
––one of only ten in the world––

Exhaling




 

Artist's Statement

I was deeply moved by the story of Raya, a woman writer and photographer from Baghdad. As I sifted through the images of Al-Mutanabbi Street after the explosion, I found myself listening for a woman’s voice amidst the rubble.

As I read Raya’s account in the hours and days following the bombing, I had a visceral reaction – a felt connection to the subjective nature of her narrative. Though our life circumstances are worlds apart, the commonplace experiences she describes – sipping on hot coffee, chatting with her mother, watching people’s feet, even the feeling of exhaling pain – struck a familiar and empathetic chord.

My intention for the broadside image was to be both illustrative of Raya’s story and symbolic of a woman’s strength, holding steady amidst the horror and chaos of the devastating situation.