DESIRE TO NOT EXIST
2015 - 2017
LEWISTON - DUBAI - UTAH
2017: Inkjet Print on Phototex
2016: dye Sublmation Print on Aluminum
"The Desire to Not Exist" is a photographic installation that offers a deeply personal exploration of the intersection of mental health, spirituality, and identity. Nouf Alhimiary delves into the profound and often challenging experience of navigating depression as a Hejazi woman, and in doing so, she forges a unique and transformative relationship with the divine.
Drawing inspiration from the writings of Tawfiq Alhakeem, Alhimiary's work becomes a platform for a dialogue with the inner self and a divine presence. The triptych is a visual and emotional journey, mirroring the turbulent landscape of one's psyche. Each panel of the triptych represents a different facet of this exploration.
In her artistic process, Alhimiary embraces the complexities of depression. She reframes it not as a weakness but as an opportunity for resilience and introspection. It is a courageous act of self-expression, confronting the very human desire to withdraw from existence, and ultimately, transforming it into a conversation with the divine.
The work is an invitation to the viewer to engage in their own contemplative journey. The Hejazi cultural context adds an additional layer of significance, emphasizing the importance of acknowledging the intersectionality of identity and mental health. It challenges stereotypes and stigmas surrounding mental health in the context of cultural identity.
"The Desire to Not Exist" finds a permanent place in the Bates Museum of Art's collection.