“When I first began hooping, I discovered something powerful in the circular and rhythmic motion. It reminds me of the rotation of the earth and the planets, the spiralling DNA structure and the tawaf in Mecca. … My choice to combine a plastic child’s toy, which represents innocence and play, with the niqab, [which] is regarded as the most defining visual representation of womanhood in Saudi Arabia and has always been in the center of global controversy, gave this static representation a new kind of movement.”
1984 born and lives in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Balqis Al Rashed was born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and raised in Beirut for sixteen years where she graduated from the American University of Beirut with a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Graphic Design. It was during this time that she found and cultivated her voice and artistic expression as one that expresses her multiculturalism as well as her individuality.
When she returned to Saudi in 2009, Balqis threw herself into work, and in 2010, she co-founded Qabila Apparel, a homegrown Khaleeji clothing line. Her prolific activity and online presence have led to her March Project Residency 2015 at Sharjah Art Foundation where she exhibited her first big scale installation "Once, we fell from the sky and landed in Babel."
Balqis has been featured on various media platforms and has recently been selected as Nike ambassador. She was the first international artist in residence at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, and is working on pieces that focus on the creation of meanings, practices, and dichotomies in respect to the collective, identity, and the self.
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