Aneesah Girie’s (1999) practice is centered around ideas pertaining to materiality, investigated both through its physical forms as well as through metaphorical conceptions. Her manipulated hijab material considers the representation of gendered Muslim personhood and domesticity.

Re-presenting the hijab or Muslim veil and transforming worn scarves passed down through her family, Aneesah Girie explores ideas around materiality to address misconceptions about the lived experiences of Muslim women in her community. She recasts soft, feminine, flimsy hijabs into hardened, reflective, glass-like, sculptural forms. There is much more to being Muslim than wearing hijab, this work reiterates, and Girie wants to counter representations that are regressive and reductive. Extending this theme, Girie’s immersive research on gendered spaces such as the kitchen and the dining room leads her to play with cutlery and crockery to reframe ideas around servitude and the sacredness of women’s spaces.

Explore Aneesah’s work in our Fresh Voices exhibition and follow her on Artsy.

“The frame or ‘framing’ that I use in my work becomes an important metaphor and entry point into understanding how the frame in both its physical and social construction becomes a standardization, regulation and container for how the veiled Muslim woman is viewed. And therefore I ask, how do we begin to un-cover, to re-cover. To frame and re-frame that of which both holds and withholds. To slip, spill and pull away from or perhaps towards. The re-flections of the possibilities beyond convention, standardization and regularity.”

Aneesah is a South African who holds a BFA from the University of Witwatersrand. She earned the Wits Young Artist Award of 2021, and received multiple awards during her degree. In 2022 she was selected to participate in JP Morgan’s Abadali Art Collection Project, and was included in Guns & Rain’s annual Fresh Voices exhibition.


  • 2022  Fresh Voices, Guns & Rain, Johannesburg
  • 2022  Muzivi Wenzira, Guns & Rain, London
  • 2022  Turbine Art Fair ‘Unearthed’
  • 2021  Everard Read Gallery: RMB Talent Unlocked Exhibition 
  • 2021  Joburg Fringe Annual Show


Grants, Residencies and awards

  • 2021 Wits Young Artist Award, The Point of Order

Aneesah Girie on Artsy

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