• Issue
  • Jan 02, 2024

The Artists of 2023: Hajra Waheed

Portrait of HAJRA WAHEED. Courtesy the artist. 

“An eye for an eye, leaving everyone blind.” Attributed to Mahatma Gandhi’s concept of civil resistance, satyagraha, the lines appear faintly on a nearly pitch-black screen at the beginning of Hajra Waheed’s 11-minute projection A Letter From My Sister, November 16, 2015 (2023). As the screen is illuminated, clouds appear in a darkened sky accompanied by a deep, resonating soundtrack, and a narrative of colonial violence and displacement unfolds, based on a correspondence with the artist’s sister, a scholar studying Muslim communities across the India-Pakistan divide. The video debuted in Athens alongside a companion work, The Spiral (2019), in November, in the solo exhibition “Witness Lines,” curated by iLiana Fokianaki at the nonprofit State of Concept.