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Ways of reading

Crossing Boundaries Lecture Series

Lecture Date(s)

November 20, 2017 at 1pm November 21, 2017 at 7pm

Speaker(s)

Marwa Arsanios

Moderator(s)

George Awde, Assistant Professor at the Painting and Printmaking department

Language

English

Location

The Atrium at VCUarts Qatar The Fire Station Cinema

Acknowledgment

The Library at VCUarts Qatar
Image caption: ©MarwaArsanios

Marwa Arsanios will be talking about the subject of reading, and performing text and language as a way to deal with politics at VCUarts Qatar’s Atrium. In her lecture, she will bring the topic of thinking through reading as a communal activity, rather than something that would be done individually, in the silence of the public library or the privacy of the domestic space.

A curated reading room revolving mainly around eco-feminist themes, as a way to discuss alternative visions to view hegemonic patriarchal ideologies, will be installed in one of the Project Space as a part of the event. 

In a related event at Fire Station Cinema, she will talk about the broad frame of investigation in which her practice operates and the different aspects of the relationship between the cultural realm, politics and violence. She has been looking, through different material objects, at the way violence affects culture, and the way it gets affected by it and reproduces it.

The broad frame of investigation in which Marwa Arsanio’s practice operates, is the different aspects of the relationship between the cultural realm, politics and violence. And by the cultural realm she means its politics, economies and social manifestations. She has been looking, through different material objects, at the way violence affects culture, and the way it gets affected by it and reproduces it.

The way history is produced after that violence occurs, and how violence is then integrated into the economy of the present and in particular the economy of art, the material economy of buildings, the economy of the art institution buildings, or the art structure and the economy of space and ecology is also inclusive of the bodies participating in the production of this violence, the way they become affected by it, and in their turn produce it, which makes them an inherent part of this system of production, through their labor, speech or other forms of participation.

The affected bodies, spaces, affects, objects, ephemeras, languages, books etc… all struggle to articulate themselves in a clear way, whether through movement or speech. The dismembered movements and actions attempt to make a coherent bodily action despite the pain that is provoked.

In the past ten years, Marwa Arsanios has been looking at the material residues of this violence (from architecture to books, magazines, ephemeras, to dance, an anthropological PhD thesis and most recently the appropriation of land into the sea through the material use of garbage and rubble and the financial profit made out of garbage). What comes out of these investigations (the artworks themselves) might not be violent per say. Far from being a representation of violence, they are rather an attempt to look at hidden or undetected violence whether structural, ideological or personal.

Thinking about these questions from a historical materialist perspective, and through specific materials and objects, and looking at violence as an inherent systemic power that is approved by hegemonic politics, and through politics and its technologies and strategies that are structurally instated (example: justified state violence) but also clearly differentiating it from its potential as an emancipatory force (example: armed struggles and self-defense), Marwa Arsanios will go through few specific projects that concretize these ideas.

Biography

Marwa Arsanios at Fire Station - Artist in Residence, ©Raviv Cohen, VCUarts Qatar

Marwa Arsanios

Artist

Marwa Arsanios received her MFA from University of the Arts London in 2007, and was a researcher in the Fine Art department at Jan Van Eyck Academie from 2011 to 2012.

She had solo exhibitions at the Beirut Art Center (2017) the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles (2016), Witte de With, Rotterdam, the Netherlands (2016), Kunsthalle Lissabon, Lisbon (2015), and Art in General, New York (2015). Her work was also shown at the Thessaloniki Biennial (2015), 55th Venice Biennale (2013), the 12th Istanbul Biennial (2011), Home Works Forum in Beirut (2010, 2013, 2015), Ludwig museum (2016), the New Museum, New York (2014), M HKA, Antwerp, Belgium (2013), and nGbK, Berlin (2012). Screenings of her videos have taken place at the Berlinale, Berlin (2010, 2015), e-flux storefront, New York (2009), and Centre Pompidou, Paris (2017, 2011).

In 2012, Arsanios was awarded the special prize of the Pinchuk Future Generation Art Prize. She was nominated for the Han Nefkens Foundation award in 2014 and more recently the Paulo Cunha e Silva art prize. Marwa is also the co-founder of 98weeks.

Public Programming

Nov. 19-23, 2020 ― 9 to 5 PM

Reading Room on eco-feminist themes curated by Marwa Arsanios at the Project Space

Nov. 20, 2017― 1 to 2 PM

Crossing Boundaries Lecture Series:
'Ways of Reading' by Marwa Arsanios at the Atrium at VCUarts Qatar

Nov. 20, 2017― 2:30 to 3:30 PM

Class Talk by Marwa Arsanios with Art History Students

Nov. 21, 2017― 7 to 8 PM

Crossing Boundaries Lecture Series:
'Ways of Reading' by Marwa Arsanios at Fire Station Cinema

Nov. 21, 2017― 9 to 11 PM

Exclusive dinner with Marwa Arsanios offered to students, alumni, staff and faculty at VCUarts Qatar (RSVP - limited seats)

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