Zolaykha Sherzad is an Afghan artist, architect, designer and academic. She was born in Kabul, Afghanistan in 1967. At the age of 10 she had to leave Afghanistan and became a political refugee in Switzerland. She graduated in 1994 from the Institute of Technology School of Architecture in Lausanne, and then co-founded ARX Architects in New York.

Sherzad is a professor of Architecture at New York’s Pratt Institute School of Architecture. Her office has received numerous prizes including the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in 2000, and in 1997 she was selected by the Architectural League as one of the 7 best Young American Architects firms of the year.

In 2000, she co-founded “School of Hope”, a non-profit organisation sponsoring education for children in Afghanistan and in 2005, she founded Zarif Design Centre in Kabul, which works with Afghan women to revive the traditional art of Afghan textiles and to create modern designs based on that art.

Sherzad participated at the 2009 Venice Biennale and presented her work as part of the “East – West Divan: Art of Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan”.

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