When I was reading Outlook issue 8, I was fascinated by the pressing concerns and preoccupations of queers at the time – the debates around lesbian separatism, early explorations of queer of color experiences, resistance to respectability politics, and erasure of queerness in AIDs advocacy. The issue also contained photos from an exhibit curated by my lesbian Arab elder, Happy Hyder on lesbian of color art, which I had no idea she had been involved in back then. So when I saw Happy recently at a queer Arab potluck in Oakland, I thanked for all the difficult groundwork that she and other queer women of color laid for those of us that came after. As I thought more about this issue of Outlook, I realized that I needed to imagine the world that I and my communities are working to create – the world we want to leave behind as future elders, the one we are dreaming into being, the world which we hope might come from the fruit of our collective labor to survive and heal and carve out new ways of being. To believe such a world can exist, we have to first imagine it, and that is the spirit in which I created this piece.
2017, digital poster, 11” x 17”
Weyam is an Arab femme cis woman who grew up in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas and moved to Oakland in 2007 to study at Mills College, where she wrote an award winning undergraduate thesis on queer Muslim identity in relation to the closet. She was born the year after the first Out/Look was published. Weyam spends most of her time in the intersection of social justice, creativity and healing.