Look: Emirati woman with paralysed hands creates art with feet

To date, Sharjah-based Moza has completed 60 wonderful paintings with her foot, has been working tirelessly to prepare for a solo art exhibition in the future


Afkar Ali Ahmed

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Emirati artist Moza Abdullah Bin Zeban. Photos: M Sajjad
Emirati artist Moza Abdullah Bin Zeban. Photos: M Sajjad

Published: Tue 7 Feb 2023, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Thu 9 Feb 2023, 1:25 AM

Cerebral palsy may have claimed her arms, but for Emirati artist Moza Abdullah Bin Zeban, nothing can claim her spirit. The 45-year-old woman of determination with paralysed arms uses her feet to tell her story — a story not only of creativity and talent, but also of a spirit undaunted by what life has thrown at her.

Moza is supported by the Art for All Centre affiliated with Sharjah City of Humanitarian Services (SCHS). Clasping brushes between her toes and replacing her hands with her feet, she is harnessing what her body is capable of to its fullest extent to give free rein to her talent.

Moza uses her feet to bathe, dress, open doors, and do everything a person would do with her hands. Moza's passion for art grew when she was nine years old. She joined Art for All foundation Centre where she started using her feet to paint just as she did to carry out her daily tasks.

Her disability has not prevented her from revealing her story of challenge and achievement, with her paintings ensuring that the struggles, trials and triumphs of a woman with cerebral palsy are immortalised through art.

To date, Moza has completed 60 wonderful paintings with her foot. She is ambitious, dedicated and relentless. For the past few months she has given 12 hours of her time every day to art in order to prepare for a solo art exhibition in the future.

It may seem quite the task, but for Moza it's been a labour of love. When Khaleej Times caught up with her at her atelier while she was busy finishing another work with her foot, one look at her face was enough to understand the joy that painting gives her. A beaming Moza was the picture of joy and hope.

Speaking with the help of interpreter Akram Awad, she said that with her paintings she wants to convey a message to the world: "Disability, even if it is cerebral palsy, does not justify failure."

She said she has participated in art exhibitions in 30 countries around the world and her paintings have been shown in local and international events, where she has also garnered awards.

Moza hopes to be a world-famous artist to prove that there is no limitation; everything is possible with belief in God and oneself.

In this she has found a conducive environment in Sharjah. The emirate, which has launched several first-of-their-kind initiatives in support of women of determination from all over the world, has contributed to developing the performance and consolidating the social presence of people of determination.

According to a report issued by the Sharjah Government Media Office, Emirati women of determination have made many outstanding achievements locally, regionally and internationally.

With the support of His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, the emirate has granted women of determination their full rights and pushed them to reach outstanding international achievements.

But in the end, it is the people of determination themselves who have shown the mettle to grab these opportunities provided to them with both hands — or in the case of the talented Moza, both feet.


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