ART DUBAI FELLOWSHIP



Art Dubai Fellowship is a programme for exceptional artists, curators and writers working in the Arab world and beyond, coming together for a week-long series of intensive workshops during Art Dubai.


Twenty-six fellows have participated since 2011; together, they form a dynamic alumni group, with several continuing to collaborate and support each other, beyond their experiences on the programme.


Led by writer and curator Tirdad Zolghadr, the 2017 programme has two new developments: the fellowship is now programmed over two years, and it will focus on artists as writers.



THEME

This year’s fellowship programme will be addressing the specific issue of artists writing. With the emphasis placed on the relationship between an artist’s written output and their overall artistic practice. By means of group discussion, and mutual critique of written work, the fellowship will collectively address issues of form and structure, but also questions of a more sweeping nature. How to micromanage the tenuous relationship between image and language? What to make of the hegemonic role of English? What is the role of artist writing within the overall moral economy of contemporary art?


Instead of a necessary evil, or a harmless playground, writing will be addressed as a key mode of empowerment for an artist today. As a means to stake and maintain a position, beyond the comfort zones of indeterminacy we are professionally accustomed to. In concrete terms, the writing can include artist statements and academic essays, but also “minor” examples such as captions, blogs, press releases.


Importantly, the five participants will commit to not one but two three-day workshops, over two consecutive years, March 2017 & 2018. Between the two meetings, the group will have the opportunity to produce a collective piece of writing, to be finalised and presented by the end of March 2018. The exact format is yet to be determined, and the word count may well be modest. What is clear, however, is that the writing will engage specifically with our latter-day context (the immediate material context and/or the broader regional setting); preferably with an eye on possible futures. While in terms of materiality and visualization, the output will hopefully tap into the broader skill sets of an artist, beyond writing.


The 2017 Fellowship programme is supported by Julius Baer



Selected Fellows 2017

Panos Aprahamian is an artist, writer and filmmaker based in Beirut, Lebanon. He studied at the Lebanese Academy of Fine Arts and University of the Arts London as a Caspian Arts Scholar. His work has been showcased at Video Works 7, Open City Doc Fest and the Lebanese Film Festival.


Haig Aivazian works across a wide range of media, Haig Aivazian delves into the ways in which ideologies embed, affect and move people, objects and architecture. Often departing from known events, and weaving in lesser known narratives, he has explored apparatuses of control and sovereignty in sports, finance, museums and music.


Shuruq Harb is an artist, curator and writer based in Ramallah. She has co-founded various independent art initiatives such as ArtTerritories and The River Has Two Banks.


Bahar Noorizadeh is an artist who often works with video, text, performative lecture, installation, and computer interface recording. Selected exhibitions and screenings include: Toronto International Film Festival (2012, 2015), Biennale of Moving Images, Geneva (2016), “HISTORICODE: Scarcity and Supply” 3rd Nanjing International Art Festival, and “Metabolism” Beirut Art Center (2016).


Aarti Sunder is interested in ideas that create the subject: thought and the nature of being, territory, time, space, relationality and potential; how we relate to them; and how these ideas affect and make us. These forces of abstraction that create the individual become the form and the content of her practice through making or collecting or plotting.


Lead Tutor

Tirdad Zolghadr is a curator and writer. His most recent book is Traction, Sternberg Press 2016. Zolghadr is artistic director of the Summer Academy Paul Klee in Bern and associate curator at KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin. He teaches at the Dutch Art Institute in Arnhem.