Curious Inbox

  • 'Retracing A Disappearing Landscape' Multidisciplinary Exhibition - P21 Gallery - 30 March- 15 May 2018

Curious Inbox

Below are entries of current Arab-British related events taking place in London that you might wish to attend, festivals and exhibitions that are happening and other entries I receive in my Nahla Ink Inbox. Please contact me if you would like to be listed.

The Artisans Of Al-Darb Al-Ahmar: An exhibition that celebrates the people, culture and activity that takes place in this historic district of Cairo, that is home to 1,000 artisan workshops and 25 historical Islamic monuments. Darb Al-Ahmar, a maze of narrow and windy alleyways, connects visitors with a past and a way of life that can be found in very few places left in the world today. A huge array of crafts are made there from brass lanterns, to tents, glassware, and furniture inlaid with mother of pearl using designs that are unique to Egypt, Cairo and the district. Capturing the life and diversity of the place, the exhibition features photographs, video interviews and some of the objects that are made in Darb Al-Ahmar. The show aims to dispel negative misperceptions of Cairo (and to an extent Egypt), raise interest in the district and encourage the audience to visit it and support the artisan community who live there. Taking place 23 March-24 April, 2018 at the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG), 1 Kensington Gore, London, SW7 2AR.​

Showtime From The Frontline (Theatre): A new play from award-winning comedian Mark Thomas, the production will be touring the UK before ending with a London run. Dodging cultural and literal bullets, Israeli incursions and religion, Thomas and his team had set out to run a comedy club and put on two nights in the Palestinian city of Jenin, but only to find that it is not so simple to celebrate freedom of speech in a place with so little freedom. The Jenin refugee camp, a stronghold for the al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade during the Second Intifada, is not a place synonymous with laughs, yet it is home to the Jenin Freedom Theatre and people with a wealth of stories to tell. Thomas tells the story alongside Faisal Abualheja and Alaa Shehada, two performers, actors and now aspiring comics from the Jenin Club. Taking place 10 April–21 April, 2018 at Theatre Royal Stratford East, Gerry Raffles Square, London E15 1BN.

Emel Mathlouthi Live In London: Emel Mathlouthi is called 'the Voice of the Tunisian Revolution' and her songs carry all the fire and charge that one would expect from such an accolade. For this special evening, she will be with her band to perform their incredibly unique blend of electronic and traditional Tunisian music. With influences ranging from F Buttons, James Blake to Joan Chandos Baez, Sheikh Imam and Marcel Khalife, Mathlouthi is a truly cutting edge global artist who has played at prestigious events, such as the 2015 Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony, and has been censored for the political content and steel of her music. Taking place 18 April, 2018 at Archspace London, Tripspace 339-340 Acton Mews, E8 4EA London​

Sticks And Stones (Comedy): Presented by Arts Canteen, a brand new comedy show about culture, conflict, and dreams that will be unlike any thing you’ve seen before! BAFTA-winning TV presenter and comedian Omar Hamdi returns to Rich Mix for an exclusive solo show. The Welsh-Egyptian satirist takes aim at prejudice, racism, Islamophobia, and social and political misdeeds wherever he finds them. Omar makes the personal political and the political personal, with a disarming every-man charm. Omar Hamdi has clearly found a popular niche in his natural fascination with the human mind and inspired hybrid of standup that promises to be both informative and entertaining. Taking place 13 April, 2018 at Rich Mix, 35-47 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6LA.​

Khaled Mattawa: Libyan poet Khaled Mattawa will present a special talk on 'Poems Moving Pictures<>Pictures Moving Poems​' as part of the 'Retracing A Disappearing Landscape' interdisciplinary exhibition. Promising to be a fascinating discussion, it will be in tandem with the overall context of the show: to explore people's direct experience of and fascination with personal memory as well as the collective narratives that arise in connection to modern day Libya. Mattawa is a renowned Libyan poet, highly acclaimed Arab-American writer and a leading literary translator. He is the author of four collections of poetry, is the co-editor of two Arab American literature anthologies and the translator of eleven volumes of modern Arabic poetry. His poems, essays and translations have appeared in major American literary reviews and anthologies and his is the recipient of many literary awards, including a Guggenheim fellowship, a USA Artists Award and a MacArthur fellowship. Taking place on 31 March, 2018 at the P21 Gallery, 21-27 Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD.

The Gap Between Us - Basma Alsharif: The first UK solo exhibition by the artist and film-maker Basma Alsharif, featuring three key works from different periods of the artist’s practice. Alsharif is an L.A. based artist of Palestinian descent. She explores representations of history, conflict and subjectivity and how to produce new visual narratives. Alsharif creates rich imagery, manipulating and editing original film footage, seeking to unsettle perceptions and evoke affective experiences in the viewer. This exhibition’s central work will be Ouroboros (2017) Alsharif’s first feature length film, screened in a gallery context for the first time. Taking place 19 January-31 March, 2018 at the Mosaic Rooms, Tower House, 226 Cromwell Road, London SW5 0SW.

Banipal Book Club: The popular book club is back to discuss the novel 'Embrace on Brooklyn Bridge' by Egyptian author Ezzedine C Fishere. The work deals with the migrant experience and the encounter between East and West. On the eve of Salma’s twenty-first birthday, scattered friends and family converge on New York for a celebration organized by Darwish, her obstinate grandfather. Each guest’s journey to this fated gathering takes on an unexpected significance, as they find themselves revisiting the choices they have made in life, and rethinking their relationships with one another and the country in which they live. The is free to attend but please RSVP to bookclub@banipal.co.uk. Taking place 29 March, 2018 at The Arab British Centre, 1 Gough Square, London EC4A 3DE. 

Lydia Ourahmane 'The You In Us': Chisenhale Gallery presents a new commission and the first solo exhibition in London for Oran-based artist Lydia Ourahmane. Comprising installation, sculpture and sound, Ourahmane’s exhibition continues her ongoing engagement with the emotional, psychological and political charge of material and place. Informed by personal encounters, Ourahmane’s work raises questions surrounding systems of exchange and dissemination. Recurring throughout Ourahmane’s work is the impulse to address acts of displacement, in which allegories of absence and removal evoke wider issues of place and migration. Influenced by time spent living and working from her family home in Oran, Algeria, Ourahmane’s exhibition investigates transformation through sonic and sculptural registers. Taking place 26 January-25 March, 2018 at the Chisenhale Gallery, 64 Chisenhale Road, London E3 5QZ.

Perpetual Movement: Seven Arab women artists explore the relationship between migration and memory in connection to the Arab world and its diaspora, as part of the Arab Women Artists Now (AWAN) Festival. Curated by Lizzy Vartanian Collier​, the exhibition looks into, for example, how the memory of a place changes once a person leaves and what happens if one is ethnically associated with a location but has never even been there. It also shows how memories can be inherited, alter from generation to generation, become fragmented, or create gaps that need to be filled. Considering that people have been moving to, from and through the Arab region for hundreds, even thousands of years, the works also address the multitude of reasons for migration and the impact on the collective consciousness. With roots in Egypt, Kuwait, Syria, Yemen and the UAE, the seven artists all illustrate movement in various ways, creating a rich, multilayered picture of young women from the region. Taking place 1-25 March, 2018 at Rich Mix, 35 - 47 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6LA.

Arab Women Artists Now Festival (AWAN) 2018: ​An annual arts festival designed and delivered by Arts Canteen and a group of collaborators, AWAN aims to showcase and celebrate Arab women's achievements. Established in 2015 and now in its fourth edition, it showcases a versatile programme of female Arab artists across disciplines, whilst enabling establishing and emerging artists to perform side by side. The extensive schedule features visual arts, music, comedy, dance, design, food, film, theatre, workshops and much more. Taking place 1-25 March, 2018 mainly at Rich Mix and other London venues, pleaes refer to the AWAN festival website for more information.

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Below are entries of current Arab-British related events taking place in London that you might wish to attend, festivals and exhibitions that are happening and other entries I receive in my Nahla Ink Inbox. Please contact me if you would like to be listed.