Raisa Kabir is multi-disciplinary artist, weaver and writer, who uses contemporary textiles, sound and photography to interrogate, and question concepts around the politics of dress in connection to gender, race, and sexuality. Trained as a weaver at Chelsea College of Art, she utilises the embedded histories of cloth, to comment on the compacted social histories that are encapsulated within material culture.
Textiles and dress tell much about the politics and culture of a society, reflecting on gender, class, race and sexuality. Cloth because of its link to the body, it’s hinting at hidden labour and the violences unspoken, means that the potential emotion that cloth carries can be used as a incredible powerful tool in which to materialise and evoke historical and present human narratives.
Recent solo show (in)visible space: a series of visual essays that explored the links between the South Asian queer body and the social constructions of space and how those racialised queer bodies are read depending on the interlinked performance of gender and ethnicity through dress. Questioning how queer-presenting brown bodies are read and perceived in context to public/private space in contrast to their own gaze.
Kabir has written about South Asian queer dress identity and culture, queer femme of colour invisibility, as well as cultural appropriation, ethnicity, diaspora and dress. She is currently writing a chapter on (in)visible space that covers the visual essays, as part of the anthology to be published from the Contemporary South Asian Youth Cultures and Fashion conference, at London College of Fashion, edited by Professor Reina Lewis.