Sama Alshaibi, former MFA student at the University of Colorado Boulder, will take part in the Maldives National Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale in 2013 under the theme of "Portable Nation Disappearance as Work in Progress -- Approaches to Ecological Romanticism." Her video/installation "Silsila" will be exhibited at the Gervasuti Foundation venue. May 29th - November 24th, 2013. The Maldives website can be found http://maldivespavilion.com/
Born in 1973 in Basra, Iraq to an Iraqi father and Palestinian mother. She is a conceptual artist (video art, photography and media installation), in which she often deals with spaces of conflict as her primary subject. War, exile, power and the quest for survival are themes often seen in her works. She often uses her own body in her artwork, as a representation of the country or issue she is dealing with. Her mother and her grandparents were relocated to Iraq at around 60 years ago, as a result of Al Nakba, after meeting her father; Alshaibi and her siblings and parents left Basra in 1981. Her story of leaving Iraq is told in her film Goodbye to the Weapon and "Where The Birds Fly".
She was raised between the Middle East and United States of America, where she attended high school at Iowa City High School, in Iowa CIty Iowa. She studied photography at Columbia College in Chicago, and received her MFA at University of Colorado at Boulder, in 2005. She has exhibited extensively throughout the Americas, Europe, and the Middle East since 2003. Her solo exhibitions include London, Dubai, Guatemala City, Jerusalem and Ramallah. Her works are exhibited internationally, including the 55th Venice Biennale. (per Wikipedia, May 2013)