Afghani Girl Uses Prosthetic Arm To Paint & Stuns U.S Art World


Most 7 year-old’s don’t concern themselves with things like war, bombs, and terrorist groups. At that age most children are carefree, happy and live simple lives. For one young Afghani girl, she has experienced both of these juxtaposed situations and has captured the attention of people around the world.

7 year old Shah Bibi Tarakhail comes from a small village in Afghanistan. Her home turf was an area that had seen a lot of fighting between US forces and the Taliban, but that was normal. In August 2013 she was playing outside with her brother, and picked up what she thought looked like a rock. When she threw it on the ground it exploded which destroyed her right eye, her right arm and sadly killed her brother.

A non-profit organization called Children of War Foundation heard about her story and immediately jumped to help Shah Bibi. COWF exists to get medical help to child victims of war, and works closely with some big hospitals in the US.


International Outreach Director Ilaha Omar brought Shah Bibi to the United States to get adequate treatment at Shriners hospital for Children in Los Angeles, where the young girl received surgery on her face, and was fitted with a prosthetic arm, all for free.

She worked with doctors and therapists to get used to the new arm, and they all knew this generously donated limb would change her life drastically. What they didn’t know was how soon, and Shah Bibi certainly blew them away.

Within a week of having the prosthetic arm, Shah Bibi started picking up paintbrushes and creating abstract paintings. The prestigious Beverly Hills art gallery Galerie Michael on Rodeo Drive invited her to visit them on April 2nd where she met with artist Davyd Whaley who was thoroughly impressed and “blown away” at the young girl’s skills.


“You’re going to do a Jackson Pollock,'” he said while also telling members of the press who were in attendance that she could definitely pursue a career at her skill level.

Shah Bibi is set to return to her home in Afghanistan next week but the Children of War organization plans to bring her back in 2015 to fit her with a prosthetic eye and fix her scars.

The playful girl was seen taking lots of “selfies” around the gallery after showing off her artwork to members of the Los Angeles art industry.

What is most endearing about this story is that this little 7 year old girl shows no signs of slowing down her life or her passions just because of a horrific incident. Sure there will be tough times and emotional scars which may take time to heal because of the loss of her brother, but hers will be a story that will inspire others in her home country to rise above the injustice of war.


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