Moshtari Hilal is an Afghan-German artist and feminist living in Hamburg.
She was born in Kabul and moved during the war with her family from Afghanistan to Germany at age two.
Name: Moshtari Hilal
Current City: Hamburg, Germany
Hometown: Hamburg, Germany
Currently reading on 02/4/16: Simone de Beauvoir, the second sex and Zahra Ali, Islamic Feminisms
1. What are some of the odd things you find inspiration in?
Old grumpy men and selfies of strangers on instagram
2. Do you have a muse? How did you discover them, and how have they
Before the internet I studied magazines and books and looked for
strangers and their faces I could fall in love with. I grew up
admiring Frida Kahlo a lot and women in old photographs from
Iran. But currently I feel really inspired by girls I follow on
instagram or tumblr. I like that they are authentic and I can
relate to their thoughts and sense of fashion and beauty which
isn ́t the case with fashion magazines, Hollywood and the
mainstream media in general.
3. When did you first begin to take interest in illustrating? and why?
I have been drawing since I knew how to hold a pen – which sounds
like a cliché but is totally true. And so it was just a matter of
4. Is there any element in your creative process that you find the most
joy out of?
I hate to sit and think of an image. But I really enjoy to be in a
so-called workflow and just switch off my head and let my
whatever it is have fun. Its like mind-yoga, like being in peace.
5. Do you have any specific piece of work you’re really proud of and why?
I have two workseries that I am really proud of. One is the result
of my journeys to Afghanistan and is dealing with gender roles in
my still really patriachal birthplace. The other one is a
portrait series (embractheface),currently in process, dealing
with the beauty standards in the mainstream media and how it
affects our self-perception.
6. Are there any upcoming projects you’re excited about working on?
Actually I do! I hope to finish my first graphic short story about
the public transportation in Jordan. And hopefully start another
one about an inspiring young man who fled to Germany.
7. “All The Fridas” by Dana was such a brilliant series and I loved your
ft in the video-- how was your experience with that? Do you have any
personal connection to Frida Kahlo?
Frida Kahlo was and still is the most inspiring person to me. She
had so many reasons to be angry about her life situation and just
give up, but she never did. Instead she created a whole new
narrative of what it means to be an artist and was not ashamed to
be her own muse. She told her own story and educated the world of
her experience, because she thought she and her story were
valuable. Thats unique since we all depend on the ratification of
the others. And especially for women of color this is so
inspiring: the world ignored us and our issues, now we just have
to create and communicate our own stories and make the world
8. How would you describe your style? Do you have a favorite piece that
Minimalistic, clean and comfortable. I wear a lot of black and like
interesting shapes.Recently I fell in love with tight shirts with
a turtelneck and red lipstick.