The Muse Series, 2010

Client:

National Museum of Bahrain & Riwaq Gallery ,Bahrain

Year:

2010

In Bahraini and Islamic culture, a thebiha ذبيحة (or nether نذر) occurs when a person lays down their will or ego by slaughtering a sheep, bull or goat and pouring out the animal’s blood as a sacrifice in return for a blessing from God – or an answered prayer.

The artist performed a sacrifice in her work where she portrayed herself in the drawing Killing a Minotaur, a symbol she created that represents herself subduing violently her sexual lusts in order to gain favour by God and freedom from that burden to create art from a place that is not tortured by the ‘Muse’. After this work was created, the artist underwent a name change from Maryam Aljanahi, the young girl who was under her father in a traditional Bahraini sense, to Mariam Haji, the name she chose to represent herself as an independent female Arab artist. Freedom from the Muse is part of the Permanent Collection of the National Museum of Bahrain. Kill the Muse remains available for collection.