© 2019 by Sobia Ahmad

Works on Chiffon 

I often grapple with questions like: Where is home for those who are uprooted? How does one belong? As an immigrant, I sometimes wish to be rooted to a place to call home. Yet, often my desire for home transcends notions of place, group identity, nationality, and country of birth. My works on chiffon approach these questions. On this diaphanous fabric, I visualize what remains unresolved. In When denied home we build a memory palace, I collaged images of my childhood home and wrote repetitively in Urdu. These fragmented images become imagined recollections, floating on a flimsy, translucent surface that responds to the slightest changes in air and light. As these elements shift, so does this memory palace. In Searching for home, I hand-embroidered onto chiffon a two-part poem that came to me in a moment of desolation on August 11th, 2018, the night before the Unite the Right rally took place in Washington D.C. The delicate, un-hemmed chiffon may disintegrate over time as my understanding of self evolves, referencing the impermanence of all embodied existence, thoughts, desires and longings.