Thursday, May 20, 2010

Muhammad Cartoons

It's not so much that they are offended by the content of the cartoons, it's because its forbidden in Islam to have any depictions of the prophets of the Abrahamic religions and of God. That's why all of Islamic art is abstract or more geometrical and about the text and images of humans-- that dominate much of Christianity and Hinduism.
I think the response to these cartoons is inflated in the west. There is a tradition within Shia Islam of painting all the Shia saints and there are numerous paintings of Muhammad. I have a photo and seen one in Baghdad.

Below is a portrait of Muhammad in my Uncles library in Baghdad.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Saint Ali and the sword of the Goddess

The sword of Ali is famous in the Shia Islamic world. It is like the tongue of a serpent... was it stolen from the shrine of the Arab Goddess?

The Moroccan sociologist, novelist and feminist Fatimah Mernissi traces the origins of Dhulfiqar from the temples of Lat, Manat and Uzza. According to this legend, the Prophet appropriated two sacrificial sabres from the temple of Manat and gave them to Ali, saying that one of them was Al-Dhulfiqar, which became the famous sword of Ali the Warrior.


Wednesday, May 5, 2010


“Of course there is the body, the flesh and the invisible in between. Glowing in front of you saying kiss me fucker.”

My Fourth Painting

Monday, May 3, 2010

Usama the Camel Jockey

At the Dead Sea.

Only 20 copies left of Flying Vagina Book

Last year Usama and Kristie Alshaibi attended an artists’ residency in the Netherlands called Extrapool. The end result was a children’s book for adults called

A History of Flying Vaginas

A limited edition of 200 were printed. There are just 20 copies left for purchase. Printed on Acid Free Paper using the antiquated Stencilprint process, each copy is signed by the artists.

Available for $20 each.

To order contact Kristie: