We Believe In Shamsia

Uploaded on Monday 15 April 2013


Shamsia is the first and only female street Artist in Afghanistan. She started as a traditional painter, but after taking part on a graffiti workshop in Kabul, she decided to change her path and become a street artist. In her graffiti’s, Shamsia represents the struggle of women in Afghanistan, and at the same time their strength, power and beauty. After many years of work, Shamsia is today a recognized artist in the international graffiti scene.

Due to the power of her message, Shamsia has painted walls in streets of different places of the world, but in Kabul, her own city, she has never had the chance to make a real graffiti on the street. She has only painted interior walls of her friends’ houses, made digital interventions in Photoshop, and painted the walls of the Kabul University where she teaches young artists to make street art. This is about to change. With the support of the Sound Central Modern Art and Music Festival, Shamsia will be able to paint the first graffiti made by a female artist in the stress of Kabul.

She will have to fight against a whole society and tradition. But nevertheless, as the powerful women she is, Shamsia will do everything to achieve her dream, and paint with colors the grey streets of Afghanistan.



We Believe in Balloons is an international campaign to share 10,000 pink balloons with the people of Kabul, Afghanistan. With $1 USD contributions coming from thousands of citizens around the world, we will bring hope and beauty to a city that has endured war and destruction for more than a decade.

For decades now, whether during the Soviet Occupation, the Civil War or the Taliban Regime, the Afghan people have been subject to continuous conflict and oppression. As a result, Afghanistan has been starved economically, socially and culturally. Whilst large streams of refugees inundated the cities post 2002, life in more remote areas of the country has remained unchanged, in some instances for decades, in others even for centuries.

It is for this reason that we have chosen Kabul as the next destination for our Monday Morning series, following similar events in Bangalore in India, Nairobi in Kenya, and Yamaguchi in Japan. In each of those places, we disrupted the Monday Morning commute ritual by handing out 10,000 bio-degradable bright balloons, creating a living sculpture that brought about joy, wonderment and a new sense of awareness to people.

The Kabul series entails one more component, which is meant to symbolize an international effort, a direct reaching out by people from all over the world to the people of Afghanistan. With the awareness in mind that Afghan people continue to face life each day, despite the hardship and struggles they have and continue to encounter, the art piece will be financed by people giving no more than a single dollar -- a single balloon in an effort to generate a direct connection within and equal ownership of the overall manifestation.

Over one hundred volunteers will hand out hot pink balloons this coming spring.

Thousands of hand-to-hand exchanges will weave a living tapestry, creating a stream of shared instances of unexpected happiness.


Language: Dari

Length: 2:43

Country: Afghanistan

Creative Commons License

We Believe In Shamsia by Yazmany is licensed under a Creative Commons Public Domain 3.0 License.