rama duwaji: this month's featured artist

Commissioned for  follow the halo

Commissioned for follow the halo

For this month's issue of follow the halo we commissioned a work by Syrian illustrator and visual artist Rama Duwaji. The work is titled "Working Together//Growing Together" - a spin-off this month's theme "The Diaspora" - inspired by her own experience of living far from home. 

As most of the artists I come across (and am very much inspired by) I found Rama's work online. I loved that I could relate to her work which touches on her heritage and roots through the use of digital and traditional visual communication. Rama's work mainly consists of black and white illustrations and she utilizes her artwork to discuss topics within the Middle East, such as beauty standards and misogyny. 

When I asked her about how her background influences her work she said that: 

"My culture/background definitely influences my illustrations, however, I think a big part of what shapes my body of work and this piece specifically is my experience of living abroad in the US. As a Syrian, the momentary feeling of otherness only propels me to go back to my roots and try to convey the sense of community and sisterhood that comes from shared experiences/cultures, a blessing in a foreign country such as the US." 

Rama Duwaji is born and based in the U.S.A. and currently working towards a BFA in Communication Arts at Virginia Commonwealth University. You can follow her work on her Instagram @ramaduwaji or on her website www.ramaduwaji.com