About ArtLords/Wartists

ArtLords was established in 2014. It is a global grassroots movement of artivists motivated by the desire to pave the way for social transformation and behavioral change through employing the soft power of art and culture as a non-intrusive approach.

The ArtLords

Virtual ExhibitionSelected Theme: Social Issues

Afghanistan’s Broken Hearts
Afghanistan’s Broken Hearts

The artwork was created by ArtLords in the aftermath of United States and NATO’s hasty withdrawal from Afghanistan in August 2021. Many young Afghans flocked to the Kabul Airport from the fear of Taliban and for a chance to be evacuated through military planes. Some young Afghans, hold on to U.S. C-17 military airplanes in desperation when it was taking off. At least three young Afghans in their 20s fell to their horrible deaths from the planes all over Kabul city.

ArtLords Street at Torino, Italy
ArtLords Street at Torino, Italy

The murals of ArtLords were destroyed by the Taliban when they conquered Kabul city. ArtLords participated at the Paratissima artwork in Torin, Italy, in 2021 and the photos of some of the murals were exhibited.

ArtLords Street at Torino, Italy
ArtLords Street at Torino, Italy

The murals of ArtLords were destroyed by the Taliban when they conquered Kabul city. ArtLords participated at the Paratissima artwork in Torin, Italy in 2021, and the photos of some of the murals were exhibited.

Corruption and Waste at the Afghanistan’s Security Forces
Corruption and Waste at the Afghanistan’s Security Forces

A street-working kid paints a mural of an armored Land Cruiser vehicle with tires made of Afghan bread in Kabul city in 2019. The message of the mural was that this car costs around US$100,000 and is very common among military and police leadership but most of Afghan soldiers does not have enough to eat, or proper shoes and ammunition to stand up against terrorists.

Corruption and Waste at the Afghanistan’s Security Forces
Corruption and Waste at the Afghanistan’s Security Forces

A street-working kid paints a mural of an armored Land Cruiser vehicle with tires made of Afghan bread in Kabul city in 2019. The message of the mural was that this car costs around US$100,000 and is very common among military and police leadership but most of Afghan soldiers does not have enough to eat, or proper shoes and ammunition to stand up against terrorists.

911
911

This artwork was created in 2011 in response to the war and violence in Afghanistan and Iraq since the incident of 9/11 in New York.

Unsafe Immigration
Unsafe Immigration

The mural was painted in Kabul city in 2016, part of ArtLords public campaign against unsafe immigration and the dangers of young Afghans leaving through dangerous routes to reach Europe.

Unsafe Immigration
Unsafe Immigration

The mural was painted in Kabul city in 2016, part of ArtLords public campaign against unsafe immigration and the dangers of young Afghans leaving through dangerous routes to reach Europe.

Remember the Flight
Remember the Flight

This artwork was painted in Bern, Switzerland in 2021 in response to Taliban’s ban on education of Afghan girls.

Remember the Flight
Remember the Flight

This artwork was painted in Bern, Switzerland in 2021 in response to Taliban’s ban on education of Afghan girls.

Remember the Flight
Remember the Flight

This artwork was painted in Bern, Switzerland in 2021 in response to Taliban’s ban on education of Afghan girls.

Seek Education from Cradle to Grave
Seek Education from Cradle to Grave

This mural was painted in Nangarhar, Afghanistan in 2017 to encourage young Afghans to seek education – choose a book instead of gun and drugs.

I will build you my homeland
I will build you my homeland

This mural was painted with Afghan refugees and students in Torin, Italy in 2021. It is part of ArtLords on-going global advocacy for Afghanistan’s art and cultural heritage and Afghan people’s rights.

I will build you my homeland
I will build you my homeland

This mural was painted with Afghan refugees and students in Torin, Italy in 2021. It is part of ArtLords on-going global advocacy for Afghanistan’s art and cultural heritage and Afghan people’s rights.

Ghulam
Ghulam

One of the famous games known and played in every household in Afghanistan is playing cards. The (J) is called Ghulam in Dari/Pashto. Ghulam means slave/servant. This artwork was designed with images of Mullah Omar, Taliban’s deceased leader, Hamid Karzai, Afghanistan former president, Ashraf Ghani, Afghanistan’s president who escaped in August 2021 and Abdullah Abdullah the former chairman of peace council. This artwork indicates that these so-called leaders are serving foreigners and playing games with the future of Afghanistan.

Transformation
Transformation

This artwork is based on a famous photo and ArtLords have transformed the Talib soldiers’ guns in crayons and pencils.

Mural of Hamida Barmaki
Mural of Hamida Barmaki

Hamida Barmaki, a human rights commissioner and her family was killed in a suicide attack in January 2011 which was claimed by Hizbe Islami of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. This mural was painted in front of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar’s house in Kabul after he accepted truce and came to Kabul. The aim was to remind him to his victims. The mural was destroyed by Hekmatyar’s gunmen after few hours of being there.

Buddha’s of Bamyan
Buddha’s of Bamyan

The world-know and world heritage Buddha’s of Bamyan was bombed and destroyed by the Taliban in 2001. ArtLords painted a mural in member of the Buddha’s in Kabul city in 2018.

What we do?

ArtLords realized the opportunity for converting the negative psychological impact of blast walls on the people of Kabul into a positive visual experience. By placing issues of concerning ordinary citizens on the blast walls, ArtLords has been enabled to create a space where social issues can be expressed in a visual manner and discussed in the street, where the open art workshops take place. ArtLords provide a platform for dialogue among ordinary people on the streets of Kabul. It is giving a visual voice to the voiceless, which is the motivated dynamic behind the very existence of the movement.

ArtLords is to promote the message of empathy, kindness, and peace through the expressivity of the arts and culture. It wishes to portray a visual representation of the communities’ desire to move from war towards peace. Creating a relationship between people and art, by bringing art to the people, allows for a much-needed psychological shift that opens up people’s minds to new prospects. The use of art opens up space for ‘emotions without affiliation’. It stimulates critical thought and helps people understand that war is a commonly shared experience and that only a common effort, coming from within society, can bring about peace in Afghanistan, South Asia and Middle East.

ArtLords pursue an arts-based methodology that is conceptually grounded, coordinated with other civil society stakeholders and representatives, infused with a long-term perspective vis-à-vis the nature of social change and is responsible about evaluating its effectiveness and impact. ArtLords thereby acts as a platform that allows for the use of the arts for specific tasks that measurably contribute to consent building on any given subject and that contributes to the positive transformation of society.

ArtLords is the pioneer and the first organization that started mural paintings in Afghanistan. The organization have 1 underground office in Afghanistan, an office in Istanbul, Turkey and an office in Virginia, United States. ArtLords has 7 employees and 53 artists.

www.artlords.co

www.artlords.gallery

www.letstalkpeace.org