The Poetry Project

ART: Leila Abdelrazaq

Leila Abdelrazaq

Detroit, Michigan


The #Arabs4BlackPower series was the visual component of an online effort meant to express solidarity with the Movement for Black Lives. After the release of the M4BL platform, which explicitly expressed solidarity with the Palestinian people, Palestinian and Arab organizers around the United States felt the need to reciprocate, and to do more work mobilizing against anti-Blackness in the Arab community.

Arabs4BlackPower released our own statement, and I began printing t-shirts with the phrase. I also created a print series that drew concrete connections between racialized and militarized police brutality in the United States and in Palestine.

all images courtesy of the artist

Leila is a Detroit-based Palestinian author and artist. Her debut graphic novel, Baddawi (Just World Books 2015) was shortlisted for the 2015 Palestine Book Awards and has been translated into three languages. She is also the author and Illustrator of The Opening (Tosh Fesh, 2017) as well as a number of zines and short comics. Her creative work primarily explores issues related to diaspora, refugees, history, memory, and borders. Leila has been involved in organizing in various capacities since 2011, and integrates art making into her organizing work. She is also the founder of Bigmouth Press & Comix.

#254 February / March 2018