July 12, 2017

Bard College's Center for Curatorial Studies Presents Exhibition of Contemporary Arab Art

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, NEW YORK—Bard College’s Center for Curatorial Studies has opened the exhibition “No to the Invasion: Breakdowns and Side Effects,” organized in collaboration with the Barjeel Art Foundation, Gabriella Angeleti reports for The Art Newspaper. The exhibition presents work by twenty-seven artists from the Arabic-speaking world, including Kader Attia, Sophia Al Maria, and Walid Raad, that addresses the social, political, and cultural urgencies of the region. “No to the Invasion” is on view until October 29.

The exhibition is accompanied by “No to the Invasion: From the Archive,” a collection of documentary and audiovisual material from the Middle East and North Africa from the 1960s to the present “to parse the many intersecting influences of power that act on bodies, land, and production.” Mandy Merzaban, founding curator of the Barjeel Art Foundation, said the exhibitions “allow the viewer to explore further trajectories, either through artists and works or through broader aesthetic, historical, social or political themes.”

The Barjeel Art Foundation, based in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, collaborated earlier this with the Yale University Art Gallery on a presentation of its collection of Modern art from the Middle East to mark the 175th anniversary of the university’s Arabic and Islamic Studies Program. In September, the foundation will open an exhibition of Modern and contemporary art from the Arab world at Washington D.C.’s American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center titled “Between Two Rounds of Fire, the Exile of the Sea.”

Of the foundation’s partnerships with American institutes of higher education, Karim Sultan, the foundation’s director, said, “given that contemporary Arab art is still unfamiliar to many in the United States, a student and faculty audience is an incredibly important one, which allows for a unique point of engagement with a receptive public.”

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