Rhonda Khalifeh is a Syrian-American artist and designer based in New York. Her studio practice is an investigation of surface and the ways in which it negotiates, protects, and betrays the human body. Khalifeh often draws from her personal experience with assimilation in the U.S. and stories of immigration—in particular, that of the Syrian Diaspora—to create textile installations and assemblages.
In 2018 she published Project Z with Open Projects Press. In producing this publication, Khalifeh conducted a series of in-depth interviews with nine participants with the goal of creating an article of clothing in dialogue with each subject. Upon completion, the participants were given their respective garments to keep and wear. Khalifeh views traditions of dress as case studies for the merging of multiple material cultures. In its simplest manifestations, the garment operates as the protagonist in her work, acting as an agent of conscious visibility.
Khalifeh has been an artist in residence at the SVA Bio Art Lab and the Textile Arts Center. Recent exhibitions include Elsewhere:Everywhere (Houston, TX), Before We Were Banned (Santa Fe, NM) and Ojalá (New York, NY). She is currently working on the second volume of Project Z interviews and garments.