A community-based art project that seeks to connect communities through pulling up a chair and sharing stories of positivity about Strong Women of Toledo.

Artwork by Ashley Lawson

Story from Mahdi Ghasi

Mahdi Ghasi’s story may be brief, but I think it resonates with anyone missing family. As we get older, we see our family less and less. We must be apart from them for education, for our careers, and for many other reasons. We start to appreciate our loved ones in a way that only distance can nurture. Mahdi Ghasi and his sister are both muslim. He talks about wanting to reunite and sit together again with her in their home country of Saudi Arabia. Because of this, I wanted to incorporate their culture into the artwork. I researched Islamic art and pattern-making where I discovered beautiful, intricate, and elaborate geometric patterns that have connected people, faith, mathematics and art for centuries. There is an almost atomic-like feeling when you look at these patterns from a distance. I am fascinated with geometry's inspiration from nature, and the naturally occurring patterns that inspire these Islamic patterns. To me, these patterns are the ultimate representation of a family’s genetic and spiritual connection.

- Ashley Lawson, Artist

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