Monday, March 21, 2016

Sharjah Art Foundation (SAF) presents The Time is Out of Joint, an exhibition curated by Tarek Abou El Fetouh.

Sharjah Art Foundation presents The Time is out of Joint
an exhibition curated by Tarek Abou El Fetouh

March 12 - June 12, 2016

Ali Cherri, The Disquiet (still), 2013. Courtesy of Imane Farès gallery, Paris and the artist.

Sharjah Art Foundation (SAF) presents The Time is Out of Joint, an exhibition curated by Tarek Abou El Fetouh.

A continuation of the exhibition programme for Home Works 6, Beirut (2013), The Time is Out of Joint is inspired by Andalusian philosopher Ibn Arabi’s concept of time as a fluid place and place as a frozen time. The project challenges the constraints of time and place by suggesting leaps across temporal and geographic boundaries, deliberately confusing times, places, cities and artistic events that took place in the past or will take place in the future.

The project invites the audience to engage with different platforms: an exhibition; a reading room with a discursive programme; and a conference. The Time is Out of Joint will be on view at Sharjah Art Foundation from 12 March through 12 June 2016 and will also open at the Asian Culture Complex, in Gwangju, Korea starting 8 April 2016.

The Time is Out of Joint reenacts two pivotal exhibitions that took place during key transitional moments in history – the ‘First Arab Arts Biennale’ (1) in Baghdad (1974) and the ‘China/Avant-Garde’ (2) exhibition in Beijing (1989) – and pre-enacts a future event – the ‘Equator Conference 2022’ (3) in Yogyakarta (2022). The exhibition includes video works, installations and photography by Zeinab Al Hashemi, Basma Alsharif, Hicham Benohoud, Ali Cherri, Venzha Christ, Cao Fei, Ho Tzu-Nyen, Meiro Koizumi, Maha Maamoun, Basim Magdy, Radouan Mriziga, Khalil Rabah, Kyohei Sakaguchi, Tita Salina, Wael Shawky, Konrad Smoleński, Song Ta, Jalal Toufic, Mark Teh, Aleksandra Waliszewska and Raed Yassin.

The Time is Out of Joint features four new commissions by the artists Venzha Christ, Maha Maamoun, Kyohei Sakaguchi and Raed Yassin.

From March 12–15, an extensive programme of events took place as part of the project, including a series of performances, film screenings, artist talks, presentations and discussions. The Time is Out of Joint also encompassed a one-day conference titled Equator Conference 2022 – Yogyakarta, held in Sharjah 2016 with speakers and artists; Antariksa, Researcher and co-founder of KUNCI Cultural Studies Center, Indonesia; Bassam El Baroni, Curator and Professor at the Dutch Art Institute, Netherlands; Hilmar Farid, Lecturer at the Universitas Indonesia and Jakarta Institute of Arts, Indonesia; Helgard Haug, Rimini Protokoll, Germany; Taneli Kukkonen, Professor at New York University, US and UAE; and Enin Supriyanto, Curator and Project Officer of Equator International Symposium, Indonesia.

Feature performances included: ~55 by Radouan Mriziga; Doppelgänger by Basma Alsharif; Baling by Mark Teh, 13-14; Time Tuning by Raed Yassin; and Degrees of Freedom and B by Konrad Smoleński. The Time is Out of Joint also presents a screening of Cabaret Crusades: The Secrets of Karbala by Wael Shawky. Live streaming of Venzha Christ’s installation Evolution of the Unknown will took place from the Sharjah Center for Astronomy & Space Sciences.

A two-volume publication co-edited by Ala Younis was developed as part of project. The first volume of The Time is Out of Joint features new text and images, while the second reproduces archival material and/or reflections on such material. Contributions were commissioned by writers, artists and researchers, including Tarek Abou El Fetouh, Sohyun Ahn, John Akomfrah, Kwame Appiah, Jee-sook Beck, Judith Butler, Park Chan-kyong, Faisal Darraj, Nick Denes, Fan Di’an, Cevdet Erek, Hilmar Farid, Samer Frangie, Alexander Gall, Ho Tzu Nyen, Niu Kecheng, Chen Kezhi, Kristine Khouri, Chan Koonchung, Maha Maamoun, Toni Maraini, Mohamed Melehi, You Mi, Gao Minglu, Mostafa Nissabory, Otobong Nkanga, Nikos Papastergiadis, Ismail Shammout, Ships on Stamps, Koh Seung-wook, Vandana Shiva, Sohl Lee, Sung Wan-kyung, Ahdaf Soueif, Enin Supriyanto, Tang Qingnian, Jalal Toufic, Oraib Toukan, Daniella Trimboli, Haytham El Wardany, Li Xianting, Mao Xuhui, Zhou Yan, Jeon Yong-Seok and Anthony Yung.

Another essential component of the project, The Time is Out of Joint Reading Room, presents a platform for books that expand on the themes in the exhibition. Conceptualised by Marwa Arsanios and Samer Frangie, the Reading Room will be open at SAF Art Spaces throughout the duration of the exhibition. In addition to books from across cultures, the project includes a programme of talks that started with Earth Democracy, a presentation and reading group session by Dr. Vandana Shiva, Founder of the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology and Navdanya, India.

In Sharjah, an archive room hosts the special digital library in collaboration with Asia Art Archive (Hong Kong), which includes selections of archival material of the China/Avant-Garde exhibition and the Indonesia Visual Art Archive. Next to it is a station for the Modern Art Iraq Archive as well as an active digitising station to be used to collect data from the UAE, while enabling local researchers and thinkers to engage with the growing archive.

For the complete list of events and information on The Time is Out of Joint, please visit

The Time Out of Joint is commissioned by Asia Culture Center – Theater and Sharjah Art Foundation and is supported by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism Republic of Korea and Sharjah Department of Culture and Information. 

About Sharjah Art Foundation

Since 2009 SAF has built on the history of cultural collaboration and exchange that began with the first Sharjah Biennial in 1993. Working with local and international partners, Sharjah Art Foundation creates opportunities for artists and artistic production through core initiatives that include Sharjah Biennial, the annual March Meeting, residencies, production grants, commissions, exhibitions, research, publications and a growing collection. Our education and public programmers focus on building recognition of the central role art can play in the life of a community by promoting public learning and a participatory approach to art. All our events are free and open to the public.

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(1) Baghdad’s Arab Art Biennale was a result of the 70’s short-lived revival of Arab nationalism. Designed to travel from one Arab capital to, another the second and final edition of the biennale was held in Rabat in 1976; shortly after the Arab nationalist concept collapsed altogether, along with the biennale project.

(2) ‘China/Avant-Garde’ took place at Beijing’s National Art Gallery a few months before the events in Tiananmen Square and the same year that the Berlin Wall fell. The exhibition was shut down by the authorities hours after its opening in response several provocative performance works; it reopened for three more days before being forcefully shut down due to an anonymous threatening letter.

(3) Yogyakarta’s ‘Equator Conference 2022’ is a planned conclusion to the 10-year strategy implemented by Yogyakarta Biennale Foundation through two main bi-annual events; the Jogja Biennale and Equator Symposium. The events alternate as they focus on one region around the equator every two years.

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