About Koloud Tarapolsi

Kay Tarapolsi storyteller Libyan American artist illustrationKoloud Fawzi Omar Abdul Aziz Tarapolsi is a Libyan American who promotes a positive image of Arab culture.

Brought to America at 7, Koloud has subsequently traveled to all the states, including her favorite, Puerto Rico. Along the way, she received her Bachelors of Science, a Ducktorate, and a Masters of Arts, in that order.

Moving to Seattle in early 1990s, Koloud started volunteering at the Seattle Art Museum (SAM). She was soon asked to join as an African Art Interpreter, then as a Docent. After 25 years of giving public tours about art, SAM gave her a gold badge at a very nice lunch.

Koloud founded Arab Artists Resources & Training, and served as an Arts Commissioner for her city, plus as board member for a number of extraordinary non-profit organizations. She recently lead a museum and culinary tour through the Moroccan landscape, stopping at 5 cities along the way to rest, cook and teach.

In 2008, Koloud started ACraftyArab.com, handcrafting a vibrant Arab world by offering free resources to parents and caregivers. She currently teaches art education in the Pacific Northwest. Koloud has been an artist in resident at stunning locations like YMCA Camp Orkila, and Sou’wester Historic Lodge & Vintage Travel Trailer Resort.

Contact her for more information if you have a stunning location she can rest, cook, and teach.

Table of Contents

Learning Plans

I am seeking unique opportunities to engage with students during April’s Arab Heritage Month and beyond. I look forward to sharing my Libyan heritage, as well as discuss my historical research, working with the Seattle Museum of History and Industry, of the first Arabs arrival in Washington state in the 1880s and our vital inventions and contributions to modern society.

Book-Specific Learning Lessons:

  • Talib’s Arabic Neighborhood
  • The Shape of Home

Storytelling and Storymaking:

  • Goha the Wise Fool
  • The Fisherman and the Djinn

Art Workshops:

Religious Based Learning Lessons:

  • Recycle Ramadan

Teachers Pay Teachers Learning Resources:

Koloud Tarapolsi Cooking Courses

  • Cook With… A Moroccan
  • Cook With… An Egyptian
  • Cook With… A Palestinian
  • Cook With… A Syrian

Koloud Tarapolsi Manuscripts

In 2019, Koloud Tarapolsi visited the Eric Carle Picture Book Museum’s library for 4 days. She couldn’t find any Libyan American books. Determined to be the change, Koloud became a 2021 Children’s Book Academy Yuyi Morales Scholarship beneficiary. She now crafts lyrical, silly adventures of Arab contemporary life. She has completed six picture book manuscripts and one craft tutorial book to showcase 75 recycled Ramadan crafts from her blog :

  • Chaïbia Draws a Dream – Picture book biography of Moroccan artist Chaïbia Talal
  • Najat Senses Color – Picture book biography of United Arab Emirates artist Dr. Najat Makki
  • Ilhan Voices A Victory – Picture book biography of Somali American politician Ilhan Omar
  • No Arabic at Gate 4A – Picture book adaptation from a work from Palestinian American writer Naomi Shihab Nye
  • The Alien Who Loves Hummus – Picture book about an alien who tries different Libyan foods
  • How To Play an Oud Upside Down – Picture book about a left handed musician trying to fit in
  • Reduce, Reuse, Ramadan! – Children craft book of Ramadan decor made from household items

Koloud Tarapolsi Quilling

Koloud Tarapolsi has been quilling, and teaching it to children and adults, for 10 years. Quilling evolved from Egyptian filigree. It got its name from nuns that wound paper around writing quills. The paper was shaped, glued and used to beautify items. Koloud enjoys the paper as it allows freedom to explore movement in arabesque shapes and Islamic calligraphy.

Koloud Tarapolsi Exhibits

  • 2020 – Redmond Lights, Redmond, WA
  • 2019 – Suzanne Zahr Gallery, Mercer Island, WA
  • 2018 – Onyx Fine Arts Collective, Seattle, WA
  • 2017 – ACES: Artists of Color Expo. Shunpike, Armory, Seattle, WA
  • Seattle Art Museum Volunteer Committee. Annual Show, Seattle, WA
  • International Refugee Committee. ARTvocacy, Bainbridge Island Museum, WA
  • 2016 – Onyx Fine Arts Collective. Richland Public Library, Richland, WA
  • International Refugee Committee. ARTvocacy, Pioneer Square, Seattle, WA
  • 2015 – Seattle Art Museum Volunteer Committee. Annual Show, Seattle, WA
  • 2015 – Arab Artists & Arabic Art Exhibition, Bellevue Art Museum, WA
  • 2014 – Onyx Fine Arts Collective, Artists of African Descent, Seattle, WA

Koloud Tarapolsi Outreach

Koloud Tarapolsi Affiliates

A Crafty Arab is a member of these communities:

Koloud Tarapolsi Credentials

  • January 2024 – Shel SILVERstein Scholarship 12 x 12 Picture Book Something
  • November 2023 – RISE scholarship for Teaching Artist Training Laboratory from the Washington State Arts Commission
  • September 2023 – Highlights Foundation Muslim Storytellers Cohorts
  • April 2021 – Scholarship, Kweli Conference
  • February 2021 – Children’s Book Academy’s Yuyi Morales Scholarship
  • December 2020 – City of Redmond Public Art Intensive for Eastside Artists
  • June 2018 – Golden Acorn Award for Volunteers
  • March 2010 – Washington Community Alliance for Self-Help (CASH) Business Development Training
  • September 2009 – King County Library System World Language Training
  • April 2003 – United Way of King County Leadership Effectiveness and Diversity Training
  • July 2023 – Cook With… A Moroccan
  • June 2023 – Cook With… An Egyptian
  • November 2023 – Cook With… A Palestinian
  • February 2024 – Cook With… A Syrian