Ibi Ibrahim

 Photograph from  Voyage Voyage  series

Photograph from Voyage Voyage series

Born in the United States but raised throughout the the Middle East–between Yemen, Libya, Iraq, and the United Arab Emirates–Ibi reflects on his multicultural mindset through photography and film. While many of his pieces are based on his own personal experiences, they often address controversial topics which conflict with the traditional Yemeni society he comes from. Ibi's work touches upon issues of sexuality, gender, and tradition; through his unfiltered images, he has succeeded in instigating heated discussions between Yemeni youth regarding the social and cultural effects of the widespread conservatism which has grown in the country and region over the past forty years.

In his body of work, Ibi seeks to emphasize a pivotal aspect of Middle Eastern culture and history that is accepting and open to change, regardless of conservative trends that have swept over the region. He also hopes to shed light on the the clear tradition of liberalism in the region dating back centuries, which can now only reveal itself through contained spurts. Through his practice, Ibrahim engages in controversial topics in an effort to normalize public discussions about self-exploration, sexuality, gender equality, and freedom of expression in the Middle East.

Ibi has exhibited his work extensively throughout the world, including solo and group exhibitions in Bahrain, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, Lebanon, South Korea, Germany, France, and the United States of America. Since the onset of the Yemen war/conflict in March of 2015, Ibi has been living in Berlin.


Ibi Ibrahim and Hosam Omran
Departure trailer

Departure is a short film that recounts the struggle of Yemenis stranded and displaced outside of Yemen as a result of the ongoing war. Through the usage of bird migration footage as well as animated footage of Yemen, the film aims to display the current status of the Yemeni citizen, displaced and in a constant state of waiting. Those who wait to leave, and those who wait to return. The video is accompanied by voice conversations of Yemeni women who have been displaced since the war erupted. Like thousands of other Yemenis, they found themselves suddenly unable to return to their homes, displaced from their loved ones and faced with the obstacles of the unknown. The video piece is a collaborative work between Ibi Ibrahim and Hosam Omran.