Dec 16 2014

BEYOND CLASSIFICATION, January 13th – April 12th, 2015

The University Art Gallery presents Beyond Classification, a group exhibition of contemporary photography and video by women artists from Egypt, curated by Dr. Nagla Samir of the American University in Cairo, in collaboration with Greg Pond, professor of Art and Art History at the University of the South.

The work included in the exhibition defies easy categorization. Beyond Classification offers multiple perspectives on current political and social conditions in Egypt, and diverse strategies for communicating about those conditions in photography and video. With these multiple perspectives, the exhibition deliberately aims to counter any simplistic picture, and to provide points of view often lost in representations of Egyptian experience in popular media.

Please join us for a conversation about the work between Dr. Nagla Samir and Dr. Ramesh Srinivasan, associate professor of Design-Media Arts and Information Studies at UCLA, on January 23rd at 4:30 pm in Convocation Hall. Reception to begin at 4, and continue after the discussion.

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The eight young artists represented in Beyond Classification developed their work in the past few years, as the power of electronic and social media to generate political change became apparent with the revolution that unseated Hosni Mubarak. In their choice of media, the work of these artists embraces that hope, even as it responds to the continued social and political upheaval faced by the country, and issues and questions raised by current conditions.

Many of the artists included in the exhibition address questions about identity and religion: what is it to be a Muslim woman? What does it mean to be a woman artist in Egypt today? How do non-Muslims perceive Muslims? While some of the artists in the exhibition explicitly address feminist concerns in their work, others would resist the label, or any label, preferring to cast their work as addressing universal human concerns. The artists included in the exhibition use art as a tool for confronting constraints, deflating stereotypes, representing experience, and forging connections. Continue Reading »

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