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In Your Eyes I Travel: A Portrait of A Vision 

Portrait Book

Artist Statement

Pseudonym for Individual- Sami 

In the process of developing our narrative, we worked to create a document that both reflected our understanding of Sami’s character and story and was responsive and sensitive to Sami’s understanding of himself. Developing a book that wove together Sami’s story and the work of Palestinian artists felt like a natural choice. Through creating a book that centered both artwork and language, we found a way to tell Sami’s story that reflected his cultural identity and pedagogical philosophy. We also wanted to incorporate political context for readers less familiar with the region. Lastly, we felt that this was a way to create a final product that was well-designed and visually appealing. 

Throughout the process, we were aware of our personal motivations that steered this project. We often saw our motivation in the work -- both in what we did and didn’t share -- as an asset. As educators in the AIE who are committed to the liberatory potential of the arts, we were excited by the ethos of at the center of Sami’s story. Our distinct ethnic and religious identities as well as our ties to the region, were another character in our process. As a Jewish American who has lived and worked in Jerusalem and in anti-occupation work, and as a Pakistani Muslim who was newer to learning about Israel/Palestine, we both arrived at this work with our own positionality and curiosity. This diversity was an asset and a wonderful way to learn together about a complicated place. In conclusion, while creating a portrait of Sami and his life, we believe our work reveals an aspect of the always complicated and many-faceted truth: reflecting both the story of an individual and the relationships and thoughts of three people.



Geena identifies as a proud member of the Baloch community of Pakistan. She is currently pursuing a Master’s in Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) where she serves as the Vice-Chair of Diversity on the Harvard Graduate Council. Prior to joining HGSE, Geena worked within the public education sector in Pakistan after receiving a Bachelor’s (Honours) degree in Sociology and Anthropology from the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). During her time at LUMS, she conducted research on the quality of education and obstacles to minority inclusion in Pakistan. As an avid movement choreographer, Geena is passionate about the arts and aspires to advance equity and inclusion through research on the role of arts and culture in education within Pakistan.


Sara is a lover of artwork as an agent of transformation. Sara finds home in creative process, tradition, relationship; and in Massachusetts, New York, and Jerusalem. Sara’s work — with movement, words, and sound — strives to both be aninvitation to invert what we know, and to support an imaginative agility to see beyond our personal theologies. In life and art, Sara is committed to our liberation from the familiar. She strives to create brief moments of suspension: ephemeral spaces where dissonant realities intermingle and incompatible truths sit next to one another.

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