Sheida Soleimani (b. 1990) is an Iranian-American artist, educator, and activist based in Providence, Rhode Island. The daughter of political refugees who escaped Iran in the early 1980s, Soleimani makes work that excavates the histories of violence linking Iran, the United States, and the Greater Middle East. In working across form and medium—especially photography, sculpture, collage, and film—she often appropriates source images from popular/digital media and resituates them within defamiliarizing tableaux. The composition depends on the question at hand. For example, how can one do justice to survivor testimony and to the survivors themselves (To Oblivion)? What are the connections between oil, corruption, and human rights abuses among OPEC nations (Medium of Exchange)? How do nations work out reparations deals that often turn the ethics of historical injustice into playing fields for their own economic interests (Reparations Packages)? In contrast to Western news, which rarely covers these problems, Soleimani makes work that persuades spectators to address them directly and effectively. 

Soleimani’s work is held in permanent collections including the Guggenheim Museum, New York; Museum of Fine Arts Boston; Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts; MIT List Visual Art Center, Cambridge, MA (USA); and Kadist Paris. Her work has been recognized internationally in both exhibitions and publications such as “The New York Times,” “Financial Times,” “Art in America,” “Interview,” among many others. 

Soleimani is also an assistant professor of Studio Art at Brandeis University and a federally licensed wildlife rehabilitator.