Memory of a Day I Wasn’t There For

Hanna Mahbouba
Sara Manbouba


Memory Of A Day I Wasn't There For examines post-migration and diasporic cultural legacy—how identity is constructed through the fragmented information that has been carried over (or left behind) and passed down intergenerationally. The project explores ways of honoring the importance of informal archives of knowledge and experience.
The mixed media installation is a visualization of memory and storytelling and is a starting point for a year-long project working with familial and historical archives grounded in Iraq, Finland, and The U.S. Hanan Mahbouba and Saara Mahbouba are siblings whose collaboration functions as a form of cross checking— separate memories of the same life events and stories, interpreted through differing practices. Their working process navigates the complexity of unpacking their own cultural heritages while maintaining respect for the autonomy and agency of past generations.


Hanan Mahbouba (b. San Jose, CA) is a writer and filmmaker. Her work focuses on storytelling that explores the space between belonging and otherness. She is particularly interested in studying informal archives and in the singular moments that end up framing our understandings of ourselves and others.

Saara Mahbouba (b. San Jose, CA) is a visual artist, writer, and artistic researcher. Her research interests are primarily in the intersection of identity and labor. She works with a mix of critical theory and pop culture, using the languages and strategies of others fields in an attempt to connect beyond the art world.