[London] 2012 LPFF Exhibition: Navigations – Palestinian video art, 1988 to 2011
2012 LPFF EXHIBITION
NAVIGATIONS: PALESTINIAN VIDEO ART, 1988 to 2011
Friday April 6 to Monday April 26
Barbican Centre, Mezzanine
BASMA ALSHARIF / AYREEN ANASTAS / TAYSIR BATNIJI / SHADI HABIB ALLAH /
MONA HATOUM / KHALED JARRAR / KHALIL RABAH / JAYCE SALLOUM & ELIA SULEIMAN / LARISSA SANSOUR / SHARIF WAKED / MANAR ZOABI
Navigations: Palestinian Video Art, 1988 to 2011 celebrates the breadth and vitality of creative practices developed by artists working in Palestine and the diaspora over nearly a quarter of a century. During this time, generations of visual artists have enlisted the full spectrum of production techniques to explore a fascinating variety of aesthetic sensibilities and conceptual concerns. The fifteen works presented in Navigations offer a route into this rich creative terrain, tracing different trajectories and themes in the work of a dozen highly distinctive artists.
Given the motifs of diaspora and displacement that imbue many of these artists’ practices, it is perhaps unsurprising to find works here characterised by questions of mobility and fluidity: the virtual and the real, the past and the future, the spectacular and the quotidian, the near and the far… each collide and grow wilfully entangled in many of the pieces shown. That a parallel turn to movement also emerges strongly in recent work from occupied Palestine raises the intriguing suggestion of an emphasis on passage and place: one shared by artists whose immediate conditions of practice might otherwise suggest less affinity in relationships toward the spatial.
But if such motifs hint at a certain familiality transcending the works brought together in Navigations, they do so only quietly, provisionally. Any idea of a “national” artistic vernacular is rapidly disrupted by the sheer diversity of subjects, tools, and influences encountered in these pieces. Artists can be found applying a variety of storytelling techniques, from minimalist portrait to faux documentary. Others use ironic appropriation to spike representational economies. Some wield state of the art digital tools to move seamlessly between the transparent and the real, the figurative and the surreal.
Navigations revels in the variety of creative adventures undertaken by Palestinian artists in the video medium since the 1980s. Its 15 pieces invite a sampling of this history, and a celebration of its aesthetic and conceptual breadth.
The exhibition is curated by the Palestine Film Foundation and ArtSchool Palestine. It is the 5th to be held alongside the annual Palestine Film Festival and the first to explore video art.
The exhibition is free to the public throughout and is made possible with the generosity of contributing artists and galleries, and through the festival’s funding and venue partners.