Cyrah Dardas (b. 1990) is an American artist, educator and curator living and working in Detroit, Michigan. Her work centers around themes of American identity, queer identity, intersectional ecofeminism and gender based violence.
Her drawings, paintings, and video work have been included in group exhibitions primarily in Detroit, New York and Chicago, Including the Museum of Contemporary Art (Detroit, MI) Agora Gallery (New York, NY) Annex Gallery and Hatch Gallery (Detroit, MI) amongst others.
Her illustrations have been featured on the cover of Riverwise Magazine, as well as included in a short film, Riding With Aunt DDOT, produced by Detroit Narrative Agency
Cyrah has worked with various arts organizations in Detroit as well as internationally. In 2011, Cyrah’s passion for arts education lead to her community work with youth. Cyrah formed a youth street art collective in Guatemala City, Guatemala. Holding open studio hours on weekends and after school for students to come and make whatever they wished, freely. Cyrah and her students began to work collaboratively on large scale project goals like murals and group art shows open to the community.
Once Cyrah returned to Detroit in 2013, she began working in afterschool arts programming with organizations such as the Boggs School, Living Arts, Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit Teen Arts Council, and the Detroit Waldorf School. Cyrah is a Resident Artist for Project Art, as well as People In Education where she is facilitating programming for Alternatives For Girls. Cyrah has developed curriculum to introduce the young women at AFG to media making and graphic arts while discussing the issue of poor nutrition in Detroit public school lunches.
Beginning In 2013, Cyrah expanded her studio practice to include collaborative projects throughout Detroit. Co- founding an organization called Art Babes with Bree Gant; Cyrah began facilitating critique groups, Live drawing sessions, and group art exhibitions for Femme Identifying people.
Cyrah’s passion for community arts organizing has lead to her work as an independent curator. As a curator Cyrah is dedicated to ensuring the representation of Detroit native, female, queer, nonbinary and people of color in the Arts. Cyrah organized and curated four group art exhibition featuring the work of the members of Art Babes, as well as a show entitled Theotokos, featuring the work of Detroit Native Artists such as Tylonn J Sawyer, Sydney James, Sabrina Nelson,Nic Notion and Jamaal May Amons.
Cyrah received a curatorial residency through LIVE6; Reimagining the civic commons. The consequent show, VIRAGO was a A multi-media group art installation discussing the origins of American contemporary gender presentation. investigating the identities of 5 femme identifying, Detroit native musicians, isolating and encapsulating the ways in which they present their gender; discussing femininity through sound, fashion, photography, and environment. The exhibition features installations by Cyrah Dardas, as well as the visual art of Bakpak Durden, Taylor Childs, Deja Jones, Paul Fifty Johnson, GIsela Mcdaniel,Franchesca Lamarre, Donovan Dewberry, Ijania Cortez, Olivia Guterson and Cydney Camp.
Currently, Cyrah is working with People in Education, a sponsored project of Allied Media, and 482 Forward in developing a Youth Participatory Action Research Project investigating inhumane practices within the Detroit Public School system. Once data has been collected, Cyrah will be leading a multi-disciplinary media project depicting the findings of the study through art.