Grants for Artists 2016

Mithkal Alzghair (Syria) for his new performance/installation that attempts to embody the absurdity of war through experimentation with hanging bodies, bodies moved by an engine, bodies in counterweight, and more.

Yasmine Elmeleegy (Egypt) for the research and production of her exhibition exploring the concept of “repair” and its relationship to the functionality of the contemporary city.

Goran Galic and Gian-Reto Gredig (Switzerland) for their new video about an abandoned open-air cinema in the stone desert near Sharm el-Sheikh, which, for mysterious reasons, never screened a movie.

Sara Hamdy (Egypt) for an installation of audio and visual mappings of bird sounds recorded at different sites, along with poetic writings and lyrics exploring the mechanisms by which bird song transmits meaning as a “primary” language.

Dina Kafafy and Mai Elwakil (Egypt) for the project Medrar TV, a unique research and video archive on experiments in contemporary arts in the Arab region and by Arab artists living abroad.

Ash Moniz (Canada) for a performative research project in which he will trace the history of the paper used for immigration documents in Cairo’s renowned administration building Mugamma el-Tahrir, and create corresponding experiments in which the paper can reveal itself as an artefact of its own journey from production to distribution.

Btihal Remli (Morocco) for the production of a photography exhibition that visually narrates how the Atlas Mountain farmers cope with the tension between their traditions and the globalized market economy.

Azza Shaaban (Egypt) for the publication of her book, Dear Animal, in which she reflects on her trajectory through the life-changing experience of the 2011 Egyptian Revolution to her self-imposed retreat in India, by combining the exploratory spirit of travel books with a personal narrative of exile.

Karine Wehbé (Lebanon) for her new publication, Stop Here for Happy Holidays, which explores the realities that connect the economic, political, and social conditions of architecture in the region through an investigation of the history of beach resorts in Lebanon.

Khouloud Yassine (Lebanon) for the research and production of her new dance performance questioning the concept of authority — its visual symbols and constructed images — when it deteriorates both physically and metaphorically.

The selection committee of the above grantees comprised: Ali Cherri (video artist living in Beirut and Paris), Katerina Gregos (curator, writer and lecturer living in Brussels), Radouan Mriziga (dancer and choreographer living in Brussels), and Eckhard Thiemann (artistic director of Shubbak festival and associate artistic curator for CODA, Oslo International Dance festival).

Chrystèle Khodr (Lebanon) and Wael Ali (Syria) for a theatrical performance based on an audio recording made by Khodr’s uncle during his migration from Lebanon to Sweden in 1976. By studying and reconstructing the experiences documented on this found cassette, Khodr and Ali reflect on the relationships between communication technology and the immigrant experience.

Jessika Khazrik (Lebanon) for a site-specific play Countries Between Rivers: The Courses of Exile, using the Beirut River as a stage on which to explore the buried political histories that have allowed for its transformation into a dump, drawing connections between Beirut’s current trash and displacement crises.

Bryony Dunne (Ireland/Egypt) for Seeds from the Zoo, an exhibition of work organized by Townhouse Gallery, Cairo, and the production of a photography book as part of the exhibition with texts by Egyptian writer and curator Sara El Adl, Egyptian photojournalist Hamada Elrasam, and Canadian investigative journalist Elle Kurancid.

Inas Halabi (Palestine) for her project The Authentic Bedouin, focused on Jordanian musical productions of the 1970s and the influence of Black September on the making of Jordanian national identity. This interdisciplinary art installation will be exhibited in Amman and Jerusalem in 2017.

Oraib Toukan (Jordan) for her artist book that explores the contested history of architectural modernism in Palestine. Working with BookWorks in London and the 5th Riwaq Biennial in Ramallah, Toukan’s book plays with the visual narration of architectural history.

Wiam El-Tamami (Egypt/France) for a year-long period of research and writing towards the production of For the Space Being, a book about the refugee crisis and her experience on the Greek island of Lesvos.

Fatih Gençkals (Turkey) for the performing arts festival “A Corner in the World” in Istanbul, hosting productions by Middle Eastern artists.

The selection committee of the above grantees comprised: Amal Khalaf (Projects Curator at the Serpentine Galleries, London), Bouchra Ouizguen (choreographer and Artistic Director of Company O, Marrakech), November Paynter (Associate Director of Research and Programs at SALT, Istanbul), and Tirdad Zolghadr (independent writer, curator, and lecturer at the Dutch Art Institute, Arnhem).