Bahia Shehab

Bahia Shehab is a multidisciplinary artist, designer and art historian. She is Professor of design and founder of the graphic design program at The American University in Cairo where she developed a full design curriculum focused on the visual culture of the Arab world.

Her artwork is concerned with identity and preserving cultural heritage. Through investigating Islamic art history she reinterprets contemporary Arab politics, feminist discourse and social issues.

In 2010, the artist had conducted extensive research by looking into 1400 years of Islamic and Arab script for her "A thousand time no" project, which later inspired her during the Egyptian Revolution. When it broke out in 2011, Bahia Shehab then invested the streets to protest in her own way : she spray-painted the word "No" around Cairo.

Her work has been on display in exhibitions, galleries and streets internationally. She has received a number of international recognitions and awards which include the BBC 100 Women list, a TED Senior fellowship, and a Prince Claus Award. She is the first Arab woman to receive the UNESCO-Sharjah Prize for Arab Culture. Shehab holds a PhD from Leiden University in The Netherlands. Her publications include "A Thousand Times NO: The Visual History of Lam-Alif" , “At The Corner of a Dream” and a co-authored book “A History of Arab Graphic Design.”

Our creations with Bahia Shehab

Institute of Islamic Cultures

Institute of Islamic Cultures

Tarek Benaoum, Bahia Shehab

19 Rue Léon, 75019 Paris

Paris 2017



“Those who have no land have no sea” – Mahmoud Darwish, Cephalonia-Greece, August 2016

“Stand at the corner of a dream and fight” – Mhamoud Darwish, Vancouver-Canada, February 2016

“How wide is the revoluFon, how narrow is the journey, how big is the idea, how small is the state” – Mahmoud Darwish, Stavanger-Norway, September 2017

“My People will return as air, and light and water” – Mahmoud Darwish, Shangri-La-Hawaii, August 2018

Photo: Bahia Shehab & Bertrand Vacarisas