3rd Dec – 9th Dec 2012

What's On This Week...

What's On

3rd Dec 2012

Souk (1)

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December is upon us and, while most of you, like me, will no doubt be very busy listening to Christmas songs and watching the Muppets’ Christmas Carol on repeat, if do you manage to prize yourself away, then check out what’s on this week on the Middle Eastern cultural scene!


Monday 3rd December

Finding EquilibriumConingsby Gallery, London

Running until the 8th December, this exhibition showcases the works of two leading Moroccan artists, Salah Benjkan and Nourredine Chater, as well as the up-coming Moroccan artist Karim Attar.

The exhibition is under the Patronage of Her Highness Princess Lalla Joumala Alaoui, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Morocco.

Morocco inspires the romantic notion of an idyllic and an exotic life. Ancient medinas, colourful souks, her fabulous climate, sun-drenched beaches and her hospitable people have transformed the country into a desired destination.

Although religious and cultural traditions are still practised, over the past decades Morocco has been permeated by Western influences and urbanism. On the one hand these changes have caused unsettling tension and bewilderment within Moroccan society. On the other hand they have created a striking blend between old and new and provided a platform for artists to work in more liberated ways.

For more information, see here


Wednesday 5th December

The Arabian NightsThe Tricycle Club, London

“In our heads, my lord, we do contain all the images of the universe.”

In Baghdad, a young woman starts a revolution through the power of storytelling. For three years, King Shahryar has taken bloody vengeance against the women of his city, marrying a new bride every night and killing her in the morning.

Scheherezade is determined to stop the bloodshed using the only weapons she has – her wit and imagination. Night after night, the King’s newest bride weaves tales of seduction, silliness and suspense. How long can her stories save her?

A punky, modern reimagining of ancient tales which will be on until the 12th January.

For more information, see here


Thursday 6th December

DespiteRix Mix, London

Up until the 28th December, Arts Canteen and Rich Mix will combine to bring together the work of a group of contemporary artists from Palestine – both the West Bank and Gaza, including work by artists such as Mohammed Joha, Hani Zurob, Majed Shala, Mohammed Abusal, Nidal Abu Oun and Raed Issa.

The exhibition is curated by Arts Canteen which aims to encourage artistic conversations between the Middle East/Arab world and the UK, bringing the work of visual artists and musicians of the region and its diasporas to the UK.

Despite explores the juxtaposition of our “real” structured environments with the artistic imagination. It draws on bleak images of humiliation and restricted movement alongside sheer joy in the diversity of forms of cacti.

This collection will challenge pre-conceptions and fire curiosity.

For more information, see here


Friday 7th December

Bristol Palestinian Film FestivalBristol

This year’s festival focuses in on four villages in West Bank Palestine, provides the opportunity to try free running and invites communities in Bristol to curate their own photography exhibition on the theme ‘Us’. Alongside this you will find a season of films, shorts, photography and music exploring topics both Palestinian and universally human. Running until the 16th December, the films will be shown in various locations around Bristol.

For more information and a full programme, see here


Saturday 8th December

Febrik: The Watchtower of HappinessMosaic Rooms, London

Ending today, The Watchtower of Happiness is a new installation by Febrik. This interactive work looks at the inventive, culturally specific and unique practices that demonstrators employed to occupy public spaces in three Arab cities during the recent uprisings: Tunisia, Egypt and Syria.

The Watchtower of Happiness uses these early moments of resistance and change, to turn visitors into unintentional activists through their interactions with different vantage points, viewfinders and captured images in the installation. Visitors will be able to climb the structure, take photographs of themselves in front of different backdrops, as well as other participatory elements. Visitors’ photographs will be shared online encouraging further interaction.

Alongside this interactive installation, there will also be Other Landscapes of Occupation – a pop up shop. This Landscape will host a series of public activities- from selling objects and items by Middle Eastern contemporary designers such as Nedda El-Asmar, Zeri Crafts, Nada Debs, Silsal, Dia Batal and Mounaya; to gathering around the space to share stories over seasonal refreshments from the café; to watching others interact with the tower and activate its levels and vantage points; to playing with practices from this experience, including creating make-shift helmets from recycled materials. Click here for more about the designers and items featuring in the pop up shop.

For more information, see here

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