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T he images are stark and shocking. They show a naked female torso being menaced by dancing scissors. What makes them all the more potent is that they were created by a young Sudanese woman who was brought up in conditions of fear, repression and strict Islamic observance in Saudi Arabia. Sarah Hemmaida, 26, blames her early life with her father for the feelings of shame and guilt that still dog her artistic ambitions — and, at least partly, for the apparent suicide of her brother Abdu, 21, under a train at Romford station in London last year. Two of her nudes are on show this month in the Biscuit building in Shoreditch, London, alongside work by Turner prize winner Jeremy Deller. Hemmaida is an elfin, androgynous figure, with blue, self-cropped hair and graphically inked arms. Her Sudanese father and Sudanese-Austrian mother who was born in the UK met while studying medicine in Egypt; her mother was married and pregnant with Sarah before she graduated. Then better job opportunities lured her parents to the Saudi capital Riyadh, where they had Abdu. He was working as a doctor in a hospital — surprisingly, as a gynaecologist. After the divorce, he took us away to a town called Buraidah.
Intimacy is pretty much gone. I bring him food I make sure he's happy. But the idea of marrying my husband felt right from almost the get-go and, my patriarchal blessing made so much more sense. What about the folks at church. My husband's simply daily things, like grocery shopping, cooking, waking up with me to make coffee in the morning-are far from unnoticed. So I was falling head over heels for this guy, but in the meantime I didn't feel like we were going anywhere. Why the Mormon Church is Not a Cult.