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Solo Exhibition

From February 01, 2024 to February 29, 2024

My Mother's Tender Script

Asiya Al Sharabi

© Asiya Al Sharabi, winner of February 2024 Solo Exhibition

Artist Statement


In 'My Mother's Tender Script,' series I delve into the poignant narrative woven by my late mother through her humble phone notebook. Born into a world that allowed her no childhood, she married at the tender age of 11, bereaved by widowhood at 15, and remarried my father at 17. Her story, shaped by hardship and early responsibilities, echoes resilience and determination.

Despite a lack of formal education, my mother found solace and expression in the kitchen, where she passionately honed her culinary skills, particularly in making bread. It was amidst the warmth of the hearth and the kneading of dough that her early story unfolded.

In contrast, my father, an erudite writer and journalist, led a life adorned with education and cultural experiences. A world away from my mother's, his path was adorned with receptions, travels around the globe, and literary engagements. Perhaps my mother sought a convergence, a meeting at a crossroads. She meticulously maintained her phone notebook, her personal treasure trove of contacts and thoughts. She adorned herself with fashionable attire and practiced writing and drawings in her notebook, expressing her longing for connection.

In making "My Mother! 's Tender Script," I transformed a black-and-white print from the late 1970s into an enlarged negative. I infused her delicate drawings and writings from the phone notebook, seamlessly incorporating them before employing the resino-pigmentype technique, invented in the mid-nineteenth century.

This creative endeavor isn't merely about replicating the past; it's a tribute to the resilience, struggles, and enduring legacy of my mother's indomitable spirit.

Curator: Sandrine Hermand-Grisel

My Mother's Tender Script


Asiya Al Sharabi is a Yemeni/American Visual artist whose work has gained recognition both nationally and internationally. Currently based in the US, she initiated her career as a journalist and photographer before shifting her focus to artistic photography. Her artistry is rooted in capturing the challenges faced by Middle Eastern women, young adults, and immigrants, a perspective that profoundly influences her creations.

Her unique artistic expression thrives through photography, alternative photographer processes, and innovative techniques like collage and inverse negative prints. These methods not only enhance the aesthetic appeal of her creations but also delve into the profound struggles experienced by people. Through her art, Asiya explores the intricate interplay of politics, culture, and religion, shaping the identities of women, young adults, and immigrants. She has been featured in various publications, including Richmond Magazine, PBS NewsHour, and RVA Magazine.

Additionally, her artwork was showcased on the cover of Yemen Today magazine in celebration of International Women's Day.