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Afghanistan's First Female Graffiti Artist Covers Kabul In Feminist Art

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Catching up with Afghan graffiti queen Shamsia Hassani

War-torn Afghanistan is among the world's most dangerous countries for women. But that's not stopping one brave lady from hitting the streets to add a little feminist flair to Kabul's walls.

Shamsia Hassani is Afghanistan's first prominent female street artist. Since attending a graffiti workshop in 2010, the 28-year-old has become known for her breathtaking murals of women, often painted on fragments of bomb-damaged buildings. Some are joyful and dreamlike, others melancholic and nightmarish; but the hijab-wearing figures are always striking, graceful, and strong. When not out tagging, Hassani's active in the local art scene, running graffiti workshops at Kabul University, creating a national graffiti festival, and exhibiting work in L.A. and N.Y.C. "Being a woman in a country like Afghanistan is very complicated, especially for women who work outside," she says. "I feel danger all the time." Find her work on Instagram @shamsiahassani.

By Rachel Withers

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