springboard, a collage

today on world collage day, i’d like to share a collage i created for my son’s upcoming birthday. it’s a nostalgic visual memory of my son jumping into canandaigua lake many summers ago when we had a gorgeous lake house there. to me it epitomizes family fun and a time of togetherness which hopefully launched our kids in life the right way. spent all of yesterday working on it, but 8 hours of bending over it and cutting my finger while framing it, were worth it. esp since my son has always valued my artwork and used it extensively to decorate his apartment. to my beautiful son and to more active, outdoors, meaningful family time <3

mara ahmed. springboard, may 2023, print and paper collage on cardboard, 14”x10”

working with interns

i’m so excited that two stony brook students will be doing an internship with me this summer. they will help curate an art exhibition at huntington’s history & decorative arts museum which will be shown in concert with the short film ‘return to sender: women of color in colonial postcards & the politics of representation.’

the students will collaborate with me in telling the story of the exhibition and create a digital catalog. my vision is to provide more context for the film thru this exhibition but also to create and display beautiful art.

thank u to the @huntingtonhistoricalsociety and stephanie gotard in particular for being my community partner. thank u stony brook faculty for setting the internships up. and thank u huntington arts council for facilitating every facet of getting a nysca grant for this project.

Return our stuff

“I want Africanist anthropologists to write about the coronation in England in the same ethnographic language they use to write about African cultural practices.

You watch this spectacle in England celebrating one of the most vicious and genocidal empires and you wonder if there will ever be justice in this world.”
—JP@grosmorne29 on Twitter

BTW the pendant in the necklace worn by all British queens at their coronation since Victoria, was stolen from Lahore (my city of birth) along with everything else in the Lahore treasury. It’s called the Lahore diamond. An apt symbol of how most European wealth (remember the Golden Age or la Belle Epoque?) comes from looting, whether it be piracy, slavery or colonialism.

Make a difference

Dear all, we often talk about what we can do to support anti-colonial struggles and further movements for justice. Here is an easy and direct way.

Lift the voices of Palestinian artists/filmmakers and educate audiences worldwide on the subject of Palestine — support the Palestinian Film Festival Amsterdam (PFFA).

This year the festival will commemorate 75 years of the Nakba, the Great Catastrophe, which saw the mass expulsion of indigenous Palestinians in 1948.

The founder of the festival, my dear friend Nihal Rabbani, has applied to the Amsterdam Fund For The Arts for most of the funding, but 25% of the festival’s budget still needs to be raised in order to cover essential costs. Even if you donate the minimum amount of €10, it will help.

Pls share widely on social media and within your network. Thank you.

APAA exhibit at city hall

i am so honored to be part of the asian pacific islander american association of greater rochester’s 2023 pioneers, innovators, and entrepreneurs exhibit at rochester city hall. the exhibition is curated by the wonderful Mimi Lee and Lily Lee and will be on display until may 31st. thank u dearest Debora McDell Hernandez for taking this picture and for being honored as ally and friend of the APAA community <3

women are powerful

today i had lunch with the brilliant karen whose work i got to see in her new studio. even got a beautiful piece of art i cannot wait to frame. then high tea and catching up with dear noor. finally dinner with the gorgeous obaida – superwoman who cooked all this delicious food even though she had a full day of work today. women are incredible. women are powerful <3

akimbo opening and a dholki

akimbo bookshop’s soft opening at 714 university ave (its new location) today. so proud of my dear friend rachel and the spaces and connections she creates in our community. just amazing! went to the opening with my lovely friend roberta. later in the evening, was delighted to attend a dholki for a beautiful young lady. congrats dear mariam, fazeelah, uncle akram and aunty bushra. how i love being in rochester <3