The Artists Behind the Censored Creations and The Stories Behind Their Groundbreaking Art - PaliRoots

The Artists Behind the Censored Creations and The Stories Behind Their Groundbreaking Art

 The censored collection came about as the result of sheer frustration and pure anger within our community from being shut out, silenced, and discriminated against. When families were being senselessly kicked out of their rightful homes in Palestine, we were being revoked of our right to speak on the injustices in the land of the “free.” Artists took initiative and used their creative minds to express the emotions everyone was feeling but were unable express as the result of censorship. Here are the incredibly talented artist behind the Censored Collection that is going to break the censorship and allow for our voices to be heard.

Liberation Day Long Sleeve - Hadil Alsafadi

A Palestinian from Gaza. Digital artist and illustrator. I started pursuing art as a hobby from a young age and it turned into a journey of self-discovery. Now I tell stories through vivid colors that reflect the vitality of life, bold textures that advocate for rightful social movements and strong lines that evoke a sense of justice and hope for change.

Inspiration Behind the Design

The design was inspired by the recent uprising of the Palestinians across all Palestine and the overwhelming support of the pro-Palestinians all over the world. The unity, courage and hope we witnessed were an eye-opener of how close we are to actual victory and liberation. We often address the Nakbah but we don’t actually talk about the day of our return as much. The design captures both commemorations because it's time we start talking about liberation, for it's as real as the Nakbah.

Piece in Pieces Long Sleeve -Rami Afifi

Director, designer and artist Rami Afifi has lived across Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, making him a veteran of the Middle East. Being half Palestinian and half Egyptian and once embarrassed by his Arab heritage, he now wears it with pride and has spent the last decade contributing to the local street culture and art scene. Rami has been the creative director of local skate brands like Philadelphia & Anthlgy and has collaborated with some of the biggest regional and international brands. He wishes to one day use his art to put Palestine on the map and inspire a new generation of Arab youth to pursue a creative career. That sounds like a promising achievement!

Inspiration Behind the Design

During the intense wave of the '21 bombings on Gaza, I wanted to put out a message that summed up our feelings towards the situation. It had to somehow summaries the anger, the fear, the betrayal, the politics, and everything else that was happening, and all be wrapped up in one tidy little image that could sum all those things up. I felt the visual perfectly captured my caption, we want peace, they want us in pieces.

Years of Injustice Long Sleeve -Sahzaad Raja

I’m a collage/mixed media artist based out of Chicago, IL. I don’t have a formal background or education in art- I have always been inspired by other artists but I didn’t start creating my own until 2018. I’m completely self-taught through experimentation and influence from other artists who have a political message behind their work. I use scraps from magazines, newspapers, and books to create pieces that reflect the current political and social environment. This is an avenue for me to express my take on the world, raise awareness around important issues, and give back to communities in need.

 Inspiration Behind the Design

A common theme among a lot of my pieces shows the mouth being covered- this is to reflect how some communities have been silenced and left in the dark. Palestine has largely been ignored by the world and continues to be oppressed in front of our eyes. I wanted this piece to amplify the voices of the silenced and show different aspects of the Palestinian identity and their struggle for freedom.

End the Occupation Crewneck -Shezil Malik in Collaboration with Jenan Matari

Shehzil Malik is a designer and illustrator with a focus on social impact projects through digital art, publications, textile and public art. Her work has been featured in CNN, DW, BBC and Forbes with clients including Penguin Random House, Oxfam, New York Times, GIZ and Google.

Inspiration Behind the Design

Our Ancestors Are Calling, They Said It's Time to Free Palestine.

By: Jenan A. Matari

 When I struggle for the right words, I feel ghostly figures of old Sitos (grandmothers) whispering in my ear as my fingers type and my mouth moves. I know what's being said is a mixture of their words and my own. I imagine that my Palestinian brother living in Palestine, for all the times he has felt any sense of defeat, that another ghostly Sido (grandfather) is lifting him up and straightening his back so that he stands tall and strong in the face of our oppressor. Our ancestors are here. They are with us. I can feel them. I will not live a comfortable life at the expense of my own people's freedom. I will not make my words easy to read, nor will I reconstruct my message for a free Palestine for the comfort of others. Comfort is the accomplice to complicity. And complicity leads to the death of my people, and we have certainly seen enough of that. It took me a very long time to find my voice and so I do not fault others for having yet to find their own. I was given grace and patience and understanding even when I didn't deserve it. And so I will afford others that same "luxury" while helping you be brave to find and use your voices. To my fellow diaspora Palestinians, we are a part of this revolution. You have a role to play. We cannot abide by the made-up rule that you are to remain silent on our people's oppression to avoid the blowback here or elsewhere that is "western" any longer. Our brothers and sisters in Palestine need us as much as we need them. This uprising is about our interconnectedness and our ancestral lineage - all of which have made us brave. Our ancestors have come back for our right of return, to free our people, and they’re doing it through all of us. 

Never Defeated Hoodie – Aminah Musa

Inspiration Behind the Design 

A famous chant when attending a Palestinian rally that reminds the people that we will never be defeated if we are united.

Anti-Apartheid Club – Aminah Musa

Inspiration Behind the Design

I believe that we should all stand together and fight against colonizers. From South Africa to Palestine, we are a club against apartheid. Free the people.

All these talented artists have poured their heart and soul into making these pieces to connect with people and their emotions on a level that words only cannot amount to. These pieces of art speak and express volumes, and we are honored to have come together and share with you their talent to give you a collection that allows you to express your support for Palestine through the clothing you choose to wear.