Mona Gazala

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I am a Palestinian American artist, and my work is rooted in the understanding that all struggles against oppression and systemic injustice are inherently related. I am an interdisciplinary artist whose work explores power dynamics and their relationships to marginalized peoples. My subjects range from the erasure of indigenous Palestinian and indigenous American peoples and culture, to gentrification and the displacement of low-income families and people of color in urban centers. Whether focused on issues locally or globally, I use visual art and social actions to amplify subversive narratives in situations of power imbalance, countering the effects of historical, cultural, and social erasure.


My practice is fluid in its form: I am willing to experiment with a wide variety of media and methods - text, sculpture, prints, social practice, video and installation - to create conceptual work focusing on spatial justice; that is, social justice issues intrinsically tied to place.

In 2012, I launched the Second Sight Project in inner-city Columbus, Ohio. Second Sight is a long-running social practice work embedded in the near-west neighborhood of Franklinton, for the purposes of being a laboratory for art and engagement, as well as a center for creative neighborhood advocacy. Franklinton is mainly populated by low-income residents in a rapidly gentrifying part of the city. The work I do under the umbrella of Second Sight is both equity- and identity-building. Equity-building in the form of providing art education in neighborhood schools that lack the arts resources of schools in wealthier communities. And identity-building by facilitating participatory public art projects that directly involve residents in creating an image of Franklinton that is community-driven.