bring the noise:seeing yourself in my brown eyes.

Published July 2nd, 2007 - 03:29 GMT

bring the noise:seeing yourself in my brown eyes.

Video installation with reception: Saturday 14 July 6PM  

Dubai’s The Third Line curates a two week video exhibition at Salomon Contemporary
in the Hamptons, New York, with an impressive line-up of Middle Eastern artists.

A grid of hip young women wearing hijabs pop bubble gum. A man walks through the product- packed aisles of a hypermarket intently reciting verses from the Qura’an. A succession of hyperbolic emotional exchanges taken from various Iranian daytime television series: Bring the Noise is a video showcase playing with the ample yet awkward overlap between seemingly localized forms of culture and the manner in which they are negotiated within a globalized economy of images.

The series of videos presented in this exhibit abruptly disrupt the Western media discourse surrounding life in the Middle-East, offering an everyday counterview to spectacular and monolithic depictions of notions such as Islam, artifacts like the veil and courtship. The artists here reveal a life away from larger than life disasters and tragedies, one that is familiar in its mundane domesticity. The works are installed in one open space, overlapping, creating an impression of a lively and animated dialogue.

Lybian born artist, Arwa Abouon presents Bursting Bubbles: A playful synchronized grid montage of young women blowing bubbles. As these bubbles burst, the women are suddenly clad in hijabs matching the colors of their chewing gum. While Wael Shawky’s The Cave is a single long take of the artist walking through a supermarket in Rotterdam reciting the Surah of the same name. Shawky’s completely-focused performance wobbles the line between documentation and fiction, while the actual contents of the Surah (the narrative of the seven sleepers who miraculously slept for two centuries and then woke to a world more receptive to them) touches upon themes of transformation, knowledge and power, while the consumerist location frames issues of globalization and the flow of capital. Last but not least is double-act Farhad Moshiri and Shirin Aliabadi, whose video montage presents various instances of subtle negotiations of Iranian social restrictions through a series of melodramatic daytime television out-takes. 

‘Bring the Noise: Seeing Yourself in My Brown Eyes’ borrows its title from the Public Enemy song by the same name (Bring the Noise). This exhibition pursues The Third Line gallery’s vision of promoting contemporary art from the Middle East, presenting a sophisticated alternative to notions of art from the region and raising the profile of contemporary Middle Eastern art to an international audience.

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