Previously at the ICA - Events

Sophia Al-Maria, Slaughter (2013)

Culture Now: Sophia Al-Maria & Omar Kholeif

12 Sep 2014

Artist, filmmaker and writer Sophia Al-Maria discusses her latest body of work, Virgin with a Memory, with Omar Kholeif, curator of Fox Reading Room exhibition Whose Gaze is it Anyway?

Al-Maria rose to fame with her memoir The Girl Who Fell to Earth (Harper Collins, 2012). Both paying homage to cult cinema and a call to arms, Al-Maria's latest project evokes a culture of B-list horror movies and rape revenge thrillers, exploring the manipulation of the Arab male gaze through video and installation.

This talk marks Al-Maria's new commission for Whose Gaze Is It Anyway? and the launch of her new book, Virgin with a Memory: The Exhibition Tie-in (Cornerhouse and The Third Line, 2014).

Sophia Al-Maria (born in Tacoma, Washington) is an artist, writer and filmmaker who currently lives and works in Doha, Qatar and London, UK. For the past few years, she has been carrying out research around the concept of Gulf Futurism. Her primary interests lie in the isolation of individuals via technology and reactionary Islam, the corrosive elements of consumerism and industry, and the erasure of history.

Her work has been exhibited at the Gwangju Biennale, the New Museum in New York and the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London. Her writing has appeared in Harper's Magazine, Triple Canopy and Bidoun. She studied comparative literature at the American University in Cairo, and aural and visual cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London.

Omar Kholeif is a writer and curator whose work focuses on issues of narrative, expanded geography and political satire for a post 9/11 world. He is Curator at the Whitechapel Gallery, London, Senior Visiting Curator at Cornerhouse and HOME, Manchester and Senior Editor of Ibraaz Publishing. Previously, he headed up art and media at SPACE, London and was Curator at FACT, Foundation for Art and Creative Technology, Liverpool.

In 2012, he was a co-curator of the Liverpool Biennial. His most recent books are respectively, You Are Here: Art After the Internet, Virgin with a Memory (for Sophia Al-Maria) and Jeddah Childhood circa 1994, all published in 2014. Omar is almost a doctor, a part-time insomniac, a failed dietician, and aspires for worldwide musical domination with Lulu Abu Hamdan, with whom he will eventually record an album.

This event is part of Safar: The Festival of Popular Arab Cinema (19-25 Sep 2014). View the festival brochure here.


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E.g., 30-07-2021