New Era: The Middle East at tina b. Prague Contemporary Art Festival 2009


October 8 – December 8, 2009 (extended): Streaming Museum (streamingmuseum.org) is a new hybrid museum that presents multi-media exhibitions in cyberspace and public space on 7 continents. Launched January 29, 2008 by Nina Colosi, the museum is produced and broadcast in New York City, with exhibitions generated in collaboration with over 30 international cultural, educational, and public centers; artists, curators and visionary creators. The Streaming Museum was inspired by Nam June Paik who in the 1970’s envisioned the Internet, predicting an “information superhighway” as an open and free medium for imagination and exchange of cultures.


The museum’s exhibition, “New Era,” is a collage of visual and performing arts and visionary creation from the Middle East and includes selections made by tina b. 2009 curators, remixed for public spaces and cyberspace. The artworks reflect the peculating undercurrents in contemporary society from which will emerge the next “new era” – the theme of tina b. 2009.


In “Understanding New Media,” 1964, Marshall McLuhan wrote: “The power of the arts to anticipate future social and technological developments by a generation and more has long been recognized. In this century [poet] Ezra Pound called the artist ‘the antennae of the race.’ Art as radar acts as ‘an early alarm system,’ as it were, enabling us to discover social and psychic targets in lots of time to prepare to cope with them. This concept of the arts as prophetic contrasts with the popular idea of them as mere self-expression.”


Underscoring the exhibition is the song “Azadi,” composed and performed by the world famous Iranian singer Susan Deyhim (sussandeyhim.com) and American musician/multi-media artist Paul Miller DJ Spooky (djspooky.com). “Azadi,” which means “freedom” in Farsi, is an interpretation of an ancient poem by the legendary poet Rumi.

The music of Will Calhoun (willcalhoun.com), internationally known drummer and composer, reflects his research and cross cultural immersion in the rhythms, cultures, and music of Egypt and other regions of the world.

Among the artists exhibited in “New Era” is Israeli video artist Yael Bartana (my-i.com) whose “Sirens’ Song” 2005 focuses on the codes which structure the national and cultural consciousness in her own land but clearly the process takes place in all nations. The artist dazzles with beautiful imagery turning the focus to those who rebel against warn out ideals that no longer represent a modern Israel.


Israeli video artist Uri Dotan’s “Crossing Tel Aviv” 2009 mirrors, loops and composes imagery of anonymous pedestrians, traffic, crosswalks and other sites of urban transience, generating symmetry that suggests a form of reality that perhaps lies just beyond the level of human perception. The musical language of Keren Rosenbaum (reflexensemble.com), the dynamic contemporary classical Israeli composer and founder of Reflex Ensemble, crosses into new realms of music and sound structure, visual scoring and theatrical movement by the performers.

In YelleB Dance Ensemble’s dance video, “Pericardium,” Edo Ceder, Ella Ben-Aharon confront religious, personal, geographic, and political walls, performing at the Wailing Wall in old Jerusalem, the Israeli West-Bank barrier and in skype video conversations. Dan Farberoff, a British-born Colombian, Swiss, Israeli, interdisciplinary artist and filmmaker, is the videographer for this work. Ruti Tamir and Ofra Hofman, noted Israeli actors, perform an excerpt from their original play “The Heads,” a sort of Israeli tribute to Samuel Becket, that is a statement about the absurdity of war.


Artworks that reflect the notion of new cultural hybrids that emerge by crossing aspects of the traditional and contemporary have been selected, including work from the highly acclaimed 2009 Chelsea Art Museum exhibition in New York, “Iran Inside Out.” In “Hell’s Wash” and “Hell’s Puerto Rico,” Iranian-American Pooneh Maghazehe (poonehspeaks.com) pledges allegiance to subcultures, presenting herself as a case study in defining cultural assimilation in society. She uses symbols and terminology and constructs garments that borrow from the traditions of the multi-cultural Philadelphia neighborhood in the US where she was raised, and photographs herself wearing them during activities of daily life.


Hassan Sharif’s “Recording Stones” and “Sound”, curated by Paulina Kolczynska, are vibrant and original works he created in Dubai despite restrictions in the early 1980s that he was powerless to change. Sharif contributed to advancing contemporary artistic thought and performance art in the UAE.

ESSAYS by Paulina Kolczynska “A Tale from the World of Parallel Thinking” http://1995-2015.undo.net/it/mostra/93087 "Paths to the World, Paths Home: Hassan Sharif" https://www.ivde.net/usr/library/documents/hassan-sharif/nafas-art-magazine-paths-to-the-world-paths-home-2009.pdf

“Headgear” by Iranian-born, New York based artist Pouran Jinchi, is a series of delicately crafted paintings of patterned and branded fabrics such as Chanel, Christian Dior and Gucci, with traditional calligraphy and Islamic geometric design that forms the artist’s own unique line of post modern headgear. Jinchi’s “Poetry Series” suggests a mixture of calligraphy and abstract expressionism.

The “Self Portrait Series” 2007 and “C Series” 2009 by artist Tarek Al-Ghoussein, a Palestinian born in Kuwait, deal with how his identity is shaped in a context of inaccessibility and loss. Al-Ghoussein reconstructs allegories for the obstacles, barricades and walls erected in the Occupied Territories, and many of his photographs show the artist dwarfed by a vast desert landscape, stuck in front of remnants of walls in the middle of an open space.

The exhibition presents artworks by students from countries throughout the Middle East who study at the American University Dubai (aud.edu) and Zayed University (zu.ac.ae) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The work is charged with their aspirations and the desires of the region to achieve a global platform for art and commerce. New opportunities for exposure at international exhibitions such as the 2009 Venice Biennial, and in New York at the School of Visual Arts Gallery and Tenri Art Institute is increasing the students’ confidence and commitment to their studies.

“These emerging artists deal with a broad range of issues that come with nation building from the fusion of Eastern and Western ideas and daily living and the relationship they have to their own heritage.” …Janet Bellotto, Co-chair, Department of Art and Design Zayed University, Dubai

“What was previously an underground art movement is now gaining acceptance”… Roberto Lopardo, Chair, Visual Communications The American University of Dubai.

Artists from American University Dubai are Angelica Yassine (Lebanon, Philippines), Michelle Peric (Argentine living in Dubai), Cima Azzam (Palestine), Mona Ayyash (Palestine), Sarah Lahti (US living in Dubai), Roberto Lopardo, (US, Chair, Visual Communications, AUD), Marina Lukiyanchuk (Russia living in Dubai), Raji Al Sharif (Saudi Arabia). Artists from Zayed University are Maitha Demithan (Dubai), Janet Bellotto (Canada, Co-chair Department of Art and Design, ZU), Muna Faisal Abdulla Al Gurg (Dubai), Lateefa Bint Maktoum (Dubai).

Interdisciplinary design teams are constructing Masdar City (masdar.ae/en), a planned city in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates that will rely entirely on solar energy and other renewable energy sources, with a sustainable, zero-carbon, zero-waste ecology. Opening phase one in 2009 and to be completed in 2014, it is a global cooperative platform for the open engagement in the search for solutions to some of mankind’s most pressing issues: energy security, climate change and the development of human expertise in sustainability.



_________________________ Press release

Streaming Museum exhibits "New Era: The Middle East" at Tina B. Contemporary Art Festival 2009 Prague, Czechoslovakia and throughout worldwide network October 8 - December 8

The Streaming Museum (streamingmuseum.org), a new hybrid museum which presents multi-media exhibitions in cyberspace and public space on 7 continents, announces the October 8 opening of “New Era, The Middle East”, in collaboration with the Tina b. Prague Contemporary Art Festival 2009, Czechoslovakia.  The exhibition features music from two new albums by internationally known artists including "Azadi (The New Complexity) a song composed and performed by Paul Miller DJ Spooky with Sussan Deyhim, from “The Secret Song” album premiering October 9, and selections from “Native Lands” CD/DVD by Will Calhoun, drummer, composer, photographer, and Living Colour band member.


“New Era: The Middle East” will be exhibited in Prague’s Wenceslas Square and in the historic district on the Vernon City Gallery facade, as well as throughout the Streaming Museum network in cyberspace and public spaces on 7 continents starting October 8 – December 8.  For artist information, schedules and locations, go to streamingmuseum.org

Tina b. Prague Contemporary Art Festival (tina-b.eu) is an international contemporary art project directed by Monika Burian, which strives to combine the creative energy of the cultural scene in Central and Eastern Europe with emerging talents and trends from around the world. Tina b. is held under the auspices and with the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic and the City of Prague. An acronym for “This Is Not Another Biennial”, Tina b. is also the personification of a fictitious character, the festival’s enigmatic female patron. The 4th annual Tina b. Festival will be held from October 8 until October 25, 2009 presenting new media and avant garde arts that reflect the percolating undercurrents in contemporary society from which is emerging the new era.


Among the visual and performing artists in the Streaming Museum exhibition are:

-Israeli video artists Yael Bartana and Uri Dotan, composer Keren Rosenbaum, theater artists Ruti Tamie and Ofra Hoffman, and the YelleB Dance Company.

-A collection of work by visual artists Tarek Al-Ghoussein (Dubai) and Pouran Jinchi (Iran) curated by The Third Line, Dubai and Doha.

-Photographs by Pooneh Maghazehe (Iran) and Nicolas Scordia (France).

-A text based piece “Noosphere” by Tina b. Curator, Blanca De la Torre.

- Pioneer performance artist Hassan Sharif (Dubai) presented by Tina b. Curator, Paulina Kolczynska, who will exhibit the work and lecture at the Vernon Gallery, Prague on October 7 and 9.

-Artwork created at the American University Dubai (AUD) Visual Communications Department and Zayed University (ZU) Department of Art and Design, by professors and students from countries throughout the Middle East and abroad.  "These emerging artists deal with a broad range of issues that come with nation building from the fusion of Eastern and Western ideas and daily living and the relationship they have to their own heritage."... Janet Bellotto, Co-chair, Department of Art and Design, Zayed University, Dubai. "What was previously an underground art movement is now gaining acceptance"... Roberto Lopardo, Chair, Visual Communications, The American University of Dubai. AUD artists: Angelica Yassine (Lebanon, Philippines), Michelle Peric (Argentina, living in Dubai), Cima Azzam (Palestine), Mona Ayyash (Palestine), Sarah Lahti (US living in Dubai), Roberto Lopardo, (US, Chair, Visual Communications, AUD), Marina Lukiyanchuk (Russia, living in Dubai), Raji Al Sharif (Saudi Arabia). Artists from ZU: Maitha Demithan (Dubai), Janet Bellotto (Canada, Co-chair Department of Art and Design, ZU), Muna Faisal Abdulla Al Gurg (Dubai), Lateefa Bint Maktoum (Dubai).

-Also representing the New Era is a visionary project of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi which is building Masdar City demonstrating a commitment to finding solutions to issues of climate change, energy conservation and sustainable development, and provides a model for international cooperation and legislature.



About Streaming Museum Streaming Museum (streamingmuseum.org), a new hybrid Museum that presents multi-media exhibitions in virtual and public space on 7 continents.  Launched January 29, 2008 by Nina Colosi, the museum is produced and broadcast in New York City, with exhibitions generated in collaboration with international cultural, educational, and public centers; artists, curators and visionary creators. The Streaming Museum was inspired by Nam June Paik who in the 1970's envisioned the Internet, predicting an "information superhighway" as an open and free medium for imagination and exchange of cultures.  Streaming Museum is sponsored by The J. M Kaplan Fund, FJC Foundation, ONSSI, and is amember of the International Urban Screens Association.


Contact: Nina Colosi Founder / Creative Director, Streaming Museum nina@streamingmuseum.org

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