With maximalist, kitschy visuals, Sarah Elawad fills her practice with love

With how commercial, online and fragmented parts of the creativity industry have become, it could definitely be argued that it’s lacking in a little love. But not if the artist and designer Sarah Elawad has anything to do with it – her whole practice is bathed in the emotion. “The heart of my creative practice is love,” she says. “The work I make is both a reflection of the love in my own life as well as a gift of love I put out into the world. My interpersonal relationships, my connection with God, the joy I get when I look at a beautiful flower are all heavy influences in my art practice.”

Sarah is Sudanese, born and raised in London and currently living in New York. So, with friends and family spanning continents, there’s one particular thing that inspires Sarah the most – the “good morning” WhatsApp messages she receives from loved ones across the Arab Region. These encapsulate a lot of the things she’s thinking about when making, where she aims to bring “maximalist, kitschy and floral visuals” into her work as a means of “communicating with ones far away” and sending a “prayer in the name of love”. This concoction of visuals comes together beautifully in Sarah’s zine, In the Bloom of Their Joy The Flower of Their Happiness, with its hazy pink hues, elegant bilingual type and nostalgic visuals striking feelings of warmth deep within.

While Sarah is a graphic designer and artist by profession, she sees herself more as a “maker”, who experiments with different mediums and materials. Recently, she’s been experimenting with the creation of textiles and garments, exploring how fashion and art combine to provide a new avenue of expression.

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