Mona Gazala is an interdisciplinary, social practice artist and the founder of the Second Sight Project in Franklinton. As an American-born artist of Palestinian descent, Gazala often draws on the mystique of ancient ruins and artifacts that were the normal environment of her parent's upbringing to make parallels with aged and decaying structures in modern American cities. Gazala navigates her art with the aesthetic of an "urban archaeologist," assigning value to discarded items that others may consider of little worth; thus challenging viewers to consider what value we place on urban structures, urban neighborhoods, and the people in under-served communities. Gazala's Palestinian heritage underpins her interest in advocating for social equity, using subversive narratives to expose and examine power dynamics both locally and globally.
Gazala first earned her BFA from the Ohio State University in 1988. She went on to serve as gallery associate at SPACES gallery, Cleveland, and founded the Cleveland West Art League before returning to Columbus in 2012. She has since exhibited nationally, and her artistic and social practices have been funded by the Puffin Foundation West, the Greater Columbus Arts Council, Franklinton Arts District, and the Muna and Basem Hishmeh Foundation.