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[16days_discussion] Fwd: The Veil - Artistic Expressions - Outside In, Inside Out

radha paudel rpaudel456 at
Sat Aug 18 11:26:29 EDT 2012

we are from different world, have diverse perspetives, that is beauty of
us,really nice , congart!

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: WUNRN ListServe <list at>
Date: 18 August 2012 19:51
Subject: The Veil - Artistic Expressions - Outside In, Inside Out
To: WUNRN_ListServe at




**Georgina** Choueiri Paints the Veil****

To many in the Western world, the wearing of the hijab, or veil, by Muslim
women is a mysterious and controversial tradition. Artist Georgina
Choueiri--born into the Lebanese Civil War and raised in **Beirut**,
the **United
States** and ****Spain****--was also intrigued by the custom.****

In her series of luminous paintings and murals titled, *The Veil*, Choueiri
explores the view from inside out and outside in.****

[image: Image] <>****

**Georgina** Choueiri****

*Veils Mural*, Acrylic, Spray Paint, and Fabric, 7x4m, 2006

[image: Image] <>****

**Georgina** Choueiri - Detail Veils Mural


[image: Image] <>****

**Georgina** Choueiri****

*Blue Veils 1*, Acrylic & Spray Paint on Canvas, 70x120cm, 2004

[image: Image] <>****

**Georgina** Choueiri****

Detail, *Veils Mural*

"Having grown in an Arab Christian background and having lived half my life
in a Western culture, the veil was a curtain between our worlds," writes
artist Georgina Choueiri. "I couldn't understand why these women had to
cover themselves, only allowing others the sight of their deep dark eyes.
Why was it forbidden for a woman to reveal herself to the outside world?
Why did she have to be hidden away like some fragile bird in a golden
cage?" ****

Between 1999 and 2001, Georgina traveled across North Africa and the Middle
East to ****Pakistan**** on a work assignment, interviewing veiled women
along the way. "I was able to enter the private life of many women I
otherwise would not have had the chance to meet. This helped dissolve the
barriers once created by that piece of cloth."****

On her return home, Georgina, who studied art in **Lebanon** and ****Spain**
**, found herself artistically drawn to the veil. Eventually she devoted
herself completely to the subject, creating a series of acrylic paintings
and mixed media murals of women in veils. "I am inspired by found material
and one day I found transparent veils left in a bag on the street; they
were even shaped in the form of a veiled woman. This inspired the beginning
of The Veils series," **Georgina** explains. The ethereal quality of the
images retains the mystery of the veiled woman, but the softness and subtle
strength in the series also reveal a sense of humanity and the artist's
affection for her subject.****

Now living in **Beirut**, **Georgina** reflects on herself as an artist, as
well as the origins and impact of *The Veil*.

*How did you come to be an artist? What subjects are you most drawn to?*****

I was having many existential questions and felt a need to paint it all
out. Six years ago, I left my life and job in **Beirut** and went to ****
Barcelona**** to paint. ****Barcelona**** was such an inspiring city; it
opened my eyes to many new ways of artistic expression. I was especially
interested in exploring my interior world. One of the subjects that kept
surfacing was the veil -- the experience and impressions I had from living
in the Arab world were asking to come out.****

*Having grown up in a Christian household, why did you feel the hijab was
an important subject for you to explore?*****

It was important for me to challenge my own perception and break the
stereotypes associated with the veil. It made me reconsider the barriers --
not only physical, but religious, social, political and psychological --
around this piece of cloth. ****

You interviewed women in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan,
Syria, and Lebanon. What did you learn from them? Did your conversations
with these women affect how you approached this series?*****

Having the chance to interview many women who wore the veil was important
in order to learn their side of the story. I found out that some found it
gave them more respect and freedom, for example, from being looked upon as
a sex symbol, which in their opinion was an issue many women face in
Western culture.****

*Has this project changed your views on the veil as a religious and
political symbol?*****

I think it should be the woman's right to choose whether or not to wear the
hijab, and not something imposed on her by religious laws interpreted by
men - nowhere in the Quran does it say that a woman must wear a hijab and
the little that is mentioned on the matter is subject to interpretation.
That becomes an extension of many other issues around the rights of Arab

*Why do you think painting is such an effective way to explore and express
the complexities of this issue?*****

Words can be quite limiting in trying to convey certain emotions or
impressions. When it comes to The Veil, the entire process was a reflection
around the theme, I wasn't trying to say something specific as much as I
felt a need to explore the subject. Art gives me the freedom to do that,
without the weight that words can carry.****

*You exhibited in a group mural show at La Santa in Barcelona, and then
later exhibited your veil paintings in Beirut. Did you perceive a distinct
difference in the reaction to the exhibition of your work in Beirut as
opposed to in Barcelona?*****

In ****Barcelona****, the viewers looked upon this subject with outsider's
curiosity -- as being in a world very far from their own-- showing that the
veil still remains a curtain between both worlds. In ****Beirut****, in an
Arab country, the theme is close to home. Of the people who attended the
exhibition only a few wore the veil, with whom I had the most interesting
conversations around the subject.****

To contact the list administrator, or to leave the list, send an email to:
wunrn_listserve-request at Thank you.

Radha Paudel
*Action Works Nepa*l
email: rpaudel456 at
          actionworksnepal.awon10 at
Skype: rpaudel456
Cell: 977-9849596298
*Your Any Contribution Always Makes Difference for
Let's Live Together-Miteri Gaun' Campgain*
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