Written by William Dobson
As you might expect, the Olympics are rather dominating London at the moment. As such, this isn’t the busiest week we’ve seen for Middle Eastern cultural events. Wednesday’s Global Feast, showcasing the cuisine of Iran, is one particular highlight but perhaps now is the time to check out some of those events you might not have had the chance to get to thus far. Just in case you’ve missed them, we’ve included a number of recaps below. As per usual, get in touch with us if there’s anything you think we might have missed out!
Monday 30th July
Moro: Fifteenth Anniversary Celebrations - Moro, Exmouth Market, London
As publicised last week, Moro, Sugar Street’s favourite restaurant in London is fifteen this year and, to mark the occasion, up until August 12th they are recreating the very first menu. This promises to be a wonderful opportunity to sample the Sam & Sam Clarks’ stunningly good food heading back to its original roots, so book a table and enjoy!
Further details can be found here
Norway & Morocco - ART@10GS, 10 Grosvenor Street, London
Having been running since May, this exhibition by photographer Sandra Jordan is coming up to its last month. Fusing together the two seemingly disparate locations of the Arctic and North Africa, she says ‘Whilst you are guaranteed complete solitude in Arctic Norway, Morocco can be somewhat different, more than 150,000 people live in Fez Medina itself, yet within the contrast of both places I was drawn to the quietness and the isolation – the remote villages of the Lofoten Islands, the quiet corners of the Medinas where locals pause for respite from the hustle and bustle.’
For more information, see here
Tuesday 31st July
Fear of Breathing: Stories Of The Syrian Revolution – Finborough Theatre, London
The play which premiered on 17th July, only has a couple more weeks to run, so make sure you head down before it’s too late. As thousands have been tortured, jailed, maimed or killed by the Syrian regime, The Fear of Breathing is a hard-hitting evocation of a life or death fight for freedom, experienced from the inside.
To uncover these personal stories from the uprising, award-winning journalists Paul Wood of the BBC and Ruth Sherlock of The Daily Telegraph, together with theatre director Zoe Lafferty, travelled into Syria covertly, circumventing the ban on journalists and restrictions on movement for all non-Syrians. Immersed in Syria’s suffocating environment of oppression and fear, they spoke to protesters facing tanks and guns, soldiers who deserted to form the Free Army, activists who dream of change, as well as citizens who love President Bashar al-Assad and are terrified of a future without him.
Tickets from the Finsborough’s website.
Wednesday 1st August
Global Feat 2012: Persian Evening – Stratford Old Town Hall, London
Global Feast 2012 is one of the many wonderful events occurring this summer in London, in celebration of the Olympics. Dividing the world into 20 equal evenings, each momentarily focussed upon for a unique and unrepeatable moment, this promises to be an epic journey eastwards through the key culinary regions of the world. This evening’s feast is being prepared by the wonderful Sabrina Ghayour and Sally Butcher of Persepolis fame and attendees are sure to be in for an absolute treat.
The event will be held in the verdant covered courtyard of Stratford Old Town Hall – the closest venue to the Olympic Park and Stadium, a beautifully restored Victorian building, and a beautiful, calm oasis on Stratford High Street.
More information can be found here
Thursday 2nd August
Cairo, Year One by Nermine Hammam - The Mosaic Rooms, Kensington, London
After launching back on July 20th, this exhibition has received wonderful reviews and should definitely be checked out if you can tear yourself away from the beach volleyball. In association with Rose Issa Projects in London, the Mosaic Rooms present the first UK solo show by Egyptian artist Nermine Hammam (work pictured). Hammam lives and works in Cairo. Her works are intricate composites of layered images and symbols, using a distinctive aesthetic that combines digital manipulation and painting. This timely solo exhibition will feature two of her most recent series of work, Upekkha and Unfolding, which look at the recent civil unrest and uprisings in Egypt.
More details here.
Friday 3rd August
Palestinian Sunbird Pavilion - Dreamspace Gallery, 3 Dufferin Street, London
Another exhibition which is coming to the end of its run, after Friday you’ll only have one more week to check out the Palestinian Sunbird Pavilion, a showcase for Palestinian cultural identity with its hidden yet, highly creative layers. Combining a mixture of live projects alongside more speculative and anticipatory features, which hint at new spatial possibilities, it seeks to merge the ordinary everyday life of the West Bank and Gaza Strip with architectural projects that offer a more vivid emancipatory aesthetic for creating the built environment in Palestine. Definitely one to check out while you still have the chance.
For details, check here
Saturday 4th August
Iraq Day 2012 - Gabriel’s Wharf, London
Iraq Day 2012 in London is a chance for the Iraqi and British alike in London to celebrate the games and an opportunity to showcase to Londoners and visitors from around the world the best of Iraqi music, sport, art, culture, tourism, business, food and drink.
The event is expected to attract thousands of visitors, making it the largest Iraqi celebration outside of Iraq’s borders. From the Sumer group to Iraq on stage, celebrity appearances to cooking demonstrations, there are a range of exciting events to enjoy at Iraq Day 2012 in London. Expect lots of food and lots of singing!
More details here