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Coronavirus Through The Eyes Of Arab Artists

Sayidaty Archive shows Arab artists using art to capture a world paused by a pandemic...

Illustration by Hassan Farhat

Amid a global pandemic that is forcing the world into lockdown, Arab photographers and artists from across the Middle East are using creativity as a relief and a tool to tell the coronavirus story from their own perspectives. But how are artists really documenting one of the most significant shared human experiences in our recent history? What visuals are they using to reflect thoughts and human connections in the age of social distancing? has launched a digital archive of images relating to life in the time of COVID-19. The archive is an ongoing project, featuring documentary photographers, travel photographers, artists, painters, and other creative talents who are going to great lengths to portray and express their individual perception of the pandemic as it unfolds.

The project is a means to create a large-scale collaboration in documenting this unique time, and a way to showcase the many narratives that are currently happening around the world, all while observing and recording this event.

Self Expression and The Arts
At home, in quarantine, some photographers have turned their cameras on themselves and their families as they live through lockdowns together. Many are using their craft to seek out ways to show what life is like, while also trying to make sense of the situation or distract themselves from reality. Most of the creative mediums are in the form of photography, painting, drawing, printmaking, video, filmmaking, design and crafts.

A Collaborative Feed
The archive, a selection of images curated by the magazine’s editorial, show how the pandemic is seen through the eyes of Arab artists, and how the world has been impacted by the pandemic. The photos and detailed narratives aim to tell a complete story of the pandemic, but from a different perspective. Visuals may include real-life scenes from hospitals, deserted cities, volunteers at work, expressive paintings, drawings, and a world outside our windows, reflecting a world trying to escape the monotony of confinement.

Here's teaser to the archive, which can be accessed here. Check out our favorites!

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Illustration by Shamekh Al Bluwi
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