Six artists were invited to participate in this year’s Grant for Artists’ Practice program following the open call launched in July. The program received over 350 applications, and the process was advised by Eslam Abdel Salam (photographer and visual artist, Cairo), Laila Hida (visual artist, Marrakech), and Noor Abed (visual artist and filmmaker, Ramallah), the last two of which will act as the program’s peers for the coming year. The participating artists are:
Ahmed Younes (b. 1994, Egypt) is a composer, writer, and director of theatrical performances whose practice explores traditional, trance, and ritual music. He is currently working on “The Partridge Bird”, an interactive musical piece/game combining a funeral dance ritual, and its relationship with a children’s game, and a spiritual ritual that highlights the state of being between life and death.
Essa Grayeb (b. 1984, Palestine) is a visual artist based in Jerusalem. His practice traverses a diverse range of media, with a primary focus on photography, moving images, and installation. His project, “U.A.R. – the Utopian Arab Republic / 1958-1961”, is a series of frames that delve into the visual representations found on postage stamp envelopes issued between 1958 and 1961 in the United Arab Republic. Through these, it explores an important historical moment: the beginning of the visionary concept of Arab unity and Pan-Arabism.
Lina Laraki (b. 1991, Morocco) is a Moroccan-Senegalese visual artist and filmmaker whose work is guided by rhizomatic reflections on human deviances (social, behavioral, or psychological). Her work often delves into the complex facets of human nature. Her project, “The Inexact Encyclopedia,” seeks to redefine the classification system for madness by collecting a wide range of materials, which would be interwoven to reshape the traditional encyclopedic format.
Maissa Maatouk (b. 1992, Lebanon) is a visual artist based in Beirut. Her practice is centered around moving images, often taking the form of videos and lectures which intertwine cinema and spatial analysis. She is working on “Waiting Men” (working title), a scripted experimental video that examines how gig economies affect the restless experience of time and space in Beirut.
Nour Ouayda (b. 1991, Lebanon) is a filmmaker and film programmer. Her films experiment with various forms of fiction writing in cinema; they explore the multiple relationships between image, text, voice, and sound to provoke the eruption of the strange in the mundane. She wants to curate a film program that explores questions of film subtitling and translation, and how those establish and maintain transnational infrastructures and dialogues around cinema.
Ramz Siam (b. 1995, Palestine) is a dancer from Jerusalem. Her practice explores how dance can combine theoretical topics with movement. She improvises and choreographs dances in an attempt to embody the social and political events she witnesses. She is currently working on a movement research performance project that seeks to delve into methods used by different bodies to deal with fear and violence practiced among their bodies.
Grants for Artists’ Practice is partially supported by the Flemish Authorities.