Reading session with Nida Ghouse and Haytham El-Wardany
Is a word a concrete intervention or is it an abstraction of social relations? Is a color an abstracted property? Or is it an excess that can never be exhausted by any particularity? A reading session on color, language and community with texts by different authors.
Nida Ghouse is a writer and curator (born in Bombay) living in Berlin. Her recent essay, The Whistle in the Voice, appeared in the publication accompanying Natascha Süder Happelmann’s presentation for the German Pavilion at the 58th Venice Biennale (2019). She co-curated Parapolitics: Cultural Freedom and the Cold War (2017), is co-editing the forthcoming publication (Sternberg Press, 2020), and is realising an exhibition on an archaeology of sound in the framework of The New Alphabet (May 2020), all at Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin.
Haytham El-Wardany is a writer (born in Cairo, Egypt) living in Berlin. His recent book is Book Of Sleep, published by Alkarma, Cairo 2017 and in 2013 he published How To Disappear in the Kayfa Ta (How To) Arabic publishing initiative. The book focuses on the nature of listening, and attempts to explore the potentialities of passive activities. He is currently interested in the legacy of ancient fables and speaking animals as political creatures.
The reading will take place in English.
As part of the exhibition “Station Point” by Saba Innab, curated by Omar Berrada; until 1 December 2019.
Rereading: A Critical Diversity Textbook Workshop
11. Berlin Biennale c/o ExRotaprint, Bornemannstraße 9
Die Remise – activation by Aïcha Diallo and Annika Niemann, in German
11th Berlin Biennale c/o ExRotaprint
Free admission, limited capacity
With Aïcha Diallo und Annika Niemann
In the summer term of 2017, the project Untie to Tie—Colonial Legacies and Contemporary Societies by the ifa Gallery Berlin (Institute for International Cultural Relations) collaborated with the Institute for Art in Context at the Berlin University of the Arts. The seminar was dedicated to a critical rereading of textbooks and children’s books in relation to the politics of representation and language. In response to this textbook workshop, Aïcha Diallo and Annika Niemann are heading a publication project that is being produced in close cooperation with the ifa Gallery Berlin and that has been made possible by the Federal Agency for Civic Education. The publication introduces artistic and educational strategies and global perspectives for the recontextualization, reinterpretation, or transformation of textbook material for educational practices.
Based on the textbooks provided by the Remise, Annika Niemann and Aïcha Diallo invite the audience to reflect on how topics such as the continuity of colonialism and racism and the process of “unlearning” can be reinterpreted and reworked from the perspective of critical diversity through the implementation of artistic and educational strategies.
Artist Talk: Station Point
Talk with artist Saba Innab and curator Omar Berrada, moderated by writer, editor and researcher Reema Salha Fadda who is working on the political economy of Palestinian artistic production.
Palestine Hosting Society: A collective in the making
Presentation and tasting with Mirna Bamieh (artist, cook, Jerusalem/ Palestine)
Palestine Hosting Society is a live art project that explores traditional food culture in Palestine especially those that are vanishing or on the verge of disappearing. The project brings these dishes back to life over dinner tables, walks, and various interventions. Palestine Hosting Society is founded and run by artist and cook Mirna Bamieh, as an extension of her art practice that often looks at the politics of disappearance, and memory production.
The talk with artist Saba Innab and curator Omar Berrada will be moderated by writer, editor and researcher Reema Salha Fadda who is working on the political economy of Palestinian artistic production.
In technical drawings, a station point is the point from which a perspective is constructed. Anything that is located behind it, or in its blind spot, will be absent from the drawing. Saba Innab’s Station Point probes spatial representation as a way to reflect on the entanglements of architecture and power. The exhibition unfolds across three chapters that organize the gallery space.
The show opens on a personal note, with a letter from Saba Innab to Malevich, highlighting the blind spots of European avant-gardes and registering the impossibility of love between a Palestinian architect and the modern art movements that nourished her education.
The second chapter, composed of a sketchbook, a drawing, and several small architectural models, moves from intimate intuition to historical investigation. From Renaissance “ideal cities” to modern colonial settlements, Innab traces architectural authority through the persistence of central perspective as a mode of visual framing that has continuously produced spatial and legal marginalization.
Is there a way out of the frame? The third chapter attempts an answer. A set of columns and beams constructs a single vanishing point. Not a specific structure but perspective itself as structure. At its base lies a ruin made of claustra blocks, cut and arranged in a set of underground tunnels and inverted domes reclaimed from a buried history of vernacular construction. Upon looking at this landscape, one´s gaze is systematically interrupted. Such fugitive architecture evades visual control. By experimenting with material and form, the artist turns vulnerability into a proposition for an alternative politics of space. Within an uninhabitable world, the exhibition makes a plea for dwelling otherwise.
Omar Berrada is a grant-holder of the programme Curators in Residence of KfW Stiftung in cooperation with ifa (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen).The programme offers curators from Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia the opportunity to spend three months in Berlin, thus promoting intercultural and discursive exchange in exhibition organisation. The residency’s purpose is to raise critical awareness of postcolonial discourses and encourage intellectual engagement with cultural heritage.
With the exhibition Station Point ifa Gallery Berlin participates in the Architecture+Art Weekend 2019.