Student of Distinction: Hyfa Alsahybu

Student of Distinction: Hyfa Alsahybu

Hyfa Alsahbyi is graduating with a B.A. in Art and a minor in Art History. She is the undergraduate Dean’s Medal nominee for the Department of Art, Design and Art History.

“So much art can seem quite frivolous, but Hyfa’s work has depth, is important, educational and political. There is an urgency in her work that feels cinematic,” said Nick Potter, professor.

Alsahbyi was born and raised in Yemen before moving to the United States. Her work has been exhibited locally at Fresno State art shows and Art Hop. She received the Ina Gregg Thomas Memorial Art Scholarship. She volunteered at Valley Crescent, the only Islamic school in the Central Valley, and organized an activity for 90 children to celebrate Ramadan.

“Hyfa Alsahybi reveals a brilliance in her artwork and everything that she takes part in,” said Professor Jamie Boley. “She is serious about her work and has so much to offer as a woman artist who seems to be speaking about the complexity of her position as a Muslim and Yemen citizen.”

Alsahbyi hopes her art can serve as a means to transport viewers into her fondest memories of her home country of Yemen, believing the nation has been forgotten by many, even its own people. 

“My ultimate goal is to create an art school for children in Yemen. For them, art can serve as a means of escape, a symbol of hope, a form of self-expression, and even therapy,” said Alsahybu.

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The College of Arts and Humanities provides a diverse student population with the communication skills, humanistic values and cultural awareness that form the foundation of scholarship. The college offers intellectual and artistic programs that engage students and faculty and the community in collaboration, dialog and discovery. These programs help preserve, illuminate and nourish the arts and humanities for the campus and for the wider community.

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