7 x 17 in.
Threading the needle is challenging; keeping a steady eye on the smallest opening, while gripping a thin line of thread in the other hand, poking the gap, struggling to find it’s way through. The long line of thread finally pulls through the eye of the needle, maneuvering like a human chain through a tough situation.
In 1988, my family and thousands of Kurds fled Northern Iraq to escape the tragedies of war under Saddam Hussein’s dictatorship. Never identified within society or given any record of their existence, my parents left their homes behind for a chance at freedom. Four years after their escape, I was born in a refugee tent draped with layers of torn and worn out fabrics amidst the jagged and uncertain brown peaks of Southern Turkey.
My work explores the issues of being a refugee, an immigrant. There’s a never-ending quest to finding an identity and facing conflicts assimilating into two entirely different cultures, usually causing isolation through political and/or social alienation. I challenge myself with different processes to convey these motifs through various materials to communicate with the viewer(s). Primarily using fibers, textiles, and hair forces me to make connections between the two cultures I identify with. These materials remind me of where I came from and help me understand the meaning of “home”. As I carefully thread the needle, I think about all my female ancestors that would have repeated the same motion to mend clothes or things out of necessity; as I repeat the same motion I utilize the strength of thread to mend the frayed parts of my identity and memories.
© Beizar Aradini