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The White Pube: [ideas for a new art world]

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The ~cultural sector~ has been resistant to change, it has held on to antiquated balances of power like no other area of society, and that rigidity has affected the way we distribute resources amongst ourselves within the creative industry. We have got to radically restructure the way we do things. If we had the chance to terraform the arts landscape…

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Cassils: The Struggle For/ The Struggle Against

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In a time of lockdown and quarantines, of fascism and propaganda, we need reason and action to be supported by visions of change. Cassils discusses artistic and performative tactics uniquely suited for our time. Reflecting on ten years of practice where they carve out strategies for trans representation, they discuss tactics to educate, engage and agitate while attempting to balance…

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There is a Baba in Our House

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World premiere of the first in our annual digital commissions, featuring a Q&A with artist Leil Zahra Mortada and Nubian Geographic hosted by Dr. Hanan Toukan (Bard College Berlin). في بيتنا بابا Parting from a personal narrative, and using references from both popular culture and key political events, artist Leil Zahra Mortada uses the performative aspect of nationalism and its…

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Emily Johnson: Land and An Architecture of the Overflow

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Emily hosts monthly ceremonial fires on Mannahatta in partnership with Abrons Arts Center and Karyn Recollet. She was a co-compiler of the document, Creating New Futures: Guidelines for Ethics and Equity in the Performing Arts and is part of an advisory group, with Reuben Roqueni, Lori Pourier, Ronee Penoi, and Vallejo Gantner – developing a First Nations Performing Arts Network

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Charles Heller and Lorenzo Pezzani: Border Forensics

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In this presentation, Heller and Pezzani will discuss the nature of contemporary borders and the ever-shifting modalities of border violence. Drawing on their work within the Forensic Oceanography project since 2011, which has focused on the Mediterranean frontier, they will discuss the strategies they have used to document traces of violent events and seek accountability for them. Reflecting on the…

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Ashmina Ranjit: Politics of Being

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Just because we’re born with a vagina, why accept that our family, society, and state continue treating us as unequal ‘beings’? Why sexual violence, unequal rights, and inequities persist? Why do we need to rethink and re-imagine intersections of gender, caste, class and religion? I plan to reflect on insights from my journey of resisting and interrogating complex politics of…

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Mark Sealy: Photography, Race, Rights, and Representation

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The photographers discussed share a forensic dialogue with photography’s past and offer navigational tools for its future possibilities in the making of new identities and histories. We need to keep open cultural portals in which to discuss the application of photography as a vehicle for self-determination, remaking histories, and visual forms of resistance. The aim is a visual voyage through the…

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Hamed Sinno: Queerness in/as Metaphor

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An analysis of several musical and literary texts by Mashrou Leila, as sites for negotiating the discursive boundaries of gender construction in the public sphere, and an attempt to frame the work within ongoing conversations about the limits of representation as a mode of political engagement.

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Mise-en-crise

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World premiere of our second digital commission, featuring a Q&A with artist Malik Nashad Sharpe (Marikiscrycrycry) and writer Hélène Selam Kleih hosted by Dr. Fintan Walsh (Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary Theatre). Mise-en-Crise is a film that considers choreography as both the site and the scenography of hope, performatively carved from crisis and rebellion. Playing with the theatrical concept mise-en-scène, this…

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Reflections from Al-Quds Bard on the Current Situation

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The OSUN Center for Human Rights & the Arts, the Human Rights Project, and Middle Eastern Studies at Bard College are pleased to co-present the following panel: Ms. Rana Hajjaj, Program Manager for Al-Quds Bard College of Arts and Sciences Professor Saida Hamad, Head of Media Studies Program, Al-Quds Bard College for Arts and Sciences Professor Munir Nusseibeh, Assistant Professor…

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Hands to Hold

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World premiere of our third digital commission, featuring a Q&A with artist Emilio Rojas and writer Pamela Sneed hosted by Dr. Sanjay Kumar (Central European University). Hands to Hold is centered around 2 durational performances devised by Emilio Rojas. For a 6.5-hour performance, the artist drank a 1.5 gallons of sap from a 250 year old sugar maple in the…

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Dwala Lam’

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World premiere of a CHRA digital commission, featuring a Q&A with artist Sethembile Msezane and writer Dr. Portia Malatjie, moderated by Panashe Chigumadzi and hosted by Wits School of Arts.  Praise singing and movement is the celebration of presence. Dwala Lam’ is a praise song that reminds one of the groundedness that is inscribed in their ancestry. These inscriptions, may come by way of being…

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Lawrence Abu Hamdan – Natq: Impossible Speech

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Lawrence Abu Hamdan presents ‘Natq’, a live audiovisual essay on the politics and possibilities of reincarnation. Through listening closely to “xenoglossy” (the impossible speech of reincarnated subjects), this performance explores a collectivity of lives who use reincarnation to negotiate their condition at the threshold of the law—people for whom injustices and violence have escaped the historical record due to colonial…

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Only God Can Make Tomato Sauce

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World premiere of a CHRA digital commission, featuring a Q&A with artist Brian Lobel and writer Season Butler, moderated by Jack Ferver (Bard College). Two friends and food makers share their recipes for healing, their personal histories and food journeys, and wider reflections on medicine versus the medicinal, knowledge versus expertise, the homegrown and the home-y, the wholesome and the…

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Githa Hariharan: The Writer in Search of Citizenship

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How does a writer find her voice? And how does she locate herself among the power structures that operate in the world around her? Drawing on her own work, Githa Hariharan examines the writer’s struggle to enlarge the small space occupied by an individual life. She describes the project of giving voice to a mosaic of voices and their multiple…

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Sayak Valencia – The Livestreaming Regime: From Gore Capitalism to Contemporary Snuff Politics

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What is “gore capitalism” and how does it turn into “snuff politics” in the borderlands between Tijuana and San Diego? In answering those questions, Sayak Valencia discusses examples of audiovisual devices and virtual social networks that challenge the regime of truth through what she calls “the livestreaming regime.” Her talk considers how the contemporary body has become a platform for…

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Tastes of Loss

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World premiere of a CHRA digital commission, featuring a Q&A with artist Alexandre Paulikevitch and writer Romy Lynn Attieh, moderated by curator Amanda Abi Khalil and co-presented by CEC ArtsLink. Tastes of Loss tells the story of a dancer’s intimate relationship to food cooking and preservation. It is a visual essay on survival, womanhood, and joy. It is filmed in…

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Kendall Thomas: Taking (A)part: Human Rights, Human Rites, “Human Writes”

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In Taking (A)part: Human Rights, Human Rites and “Human Writes,” Kendall Thomas revisits “Human Writes,” a 2005 performance-installation about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on which he collaborated with the choreographer William Forsythe and The Forsythe Company. The cultural theorist Stuart Hall once argued that in the arts “things get said in ways in which they can’t get said…

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Mohammed El-Kurd: “Bombs, women, children, etc”: Humanization, Victimhood, and the Politics of Appeal

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For decades, well-meaning journalists and cultural workers used a humanizing framework in their representation of oppressed people, in hopes of countering the traditional portrayal of the Palestinian as a “terrorist.” Within this framework, a perfect victimhood emerged as an ethnocentric prerequisite for sympathy and solidarity, often over-emphasizing oppressed people’s nonviolence, humane professions, and disabilities. In “Bombs, women, children, etc.”: Humanization,…

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Hunt & Gather: Work in Progress by MA students

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The inaugural cohort of eleven MA students developed work-in-progress as a part of “Collaborations & Community,” a course taught by the Center’s director Dr. Tania El Khoury. The collaborative creative projects span various formats and artistic mediums, from dinner performance, live art, digital work, party, and posters. Wednesday 9 March Howls in the Mountains by Carol Montealegre 2:30pm (Resnick Studio,…

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Films by Omar Amiralay (Part of Imaging Land, Labor, and Infrastructure)

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CHRA will be screening three short films by Syrian filmmaker Omar Amiralay on Thursday, March 17th, 7:45pm EDT at Upstate Films, Rhinebeck NY. The event is free and open to the public. Reservations can be made through this link. The films will be followed by post-screening discussions: محاولة عن سد الفرات Film-Essay on the Euphrates Dam (1970), 13 min الدجاج The Chickens…

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Films by Ateyyat El Abnoudy (Part of Imaging Land, Labor, and Infrastructure)

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CHRA will be screening four short films by Egyptian filmmaker Ateyyat El Abnoudy on Tuesday, March 29th, 12pm EDT on Zoom (link). The event is free and open to the public. Four films will be shown on Zoom and followed by post-screening discussion with audiovisual archivist Yasmin Desouki (Chicago Film Archives, formerly Cimatheque – Alternative Film Centre in Cairo, Egypt)….

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Layli Long Soldier: My Art Is a Being: Building a Relationship to Art through Agreement, Ethics, and Pleasure

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By understanding our art as a being with whom we create a relationship, Layli Long Soldier explores the ways in which we can make commitments and agreements with our writing and art; uphold expectations and enact reciprocity, as one would do with a relative; and nourish our relationship through pleasure, playfulness, or enjoyment. These agreements with our art, in turn,…

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Khar va Attar خار وعطار : The Thorn and the Healers

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World premiere of a CHRA digital commission and a text by Dr. Manijeh Moradian, featuring a Q&A with artist Amitis Motevalli. For Khar va Attar, the artist takes on the challenge of channeling a conversation between 10th century Persian scholar and doctor, Ibn Sina (Avicenna), her uncle Manoucher Emrani, an agricultural engineer and botanist, and her friend, Soraya Medina, a…

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You Have Not Yet Been Defeated: Activism and Freedom in Egypt

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CHRA is hosting the launch & discussion of Egyptian political prisoner Alaa Abd El-Fattah’s newly published book, You Have Not Yet Been Defeated on Wednesday, April 27th, 5:00pm EDT at Weis Cinema, Bard College. Join us for a conversation with filmmaker and activist Sanaa Seif and scholar Omnia Khalil as they reflect on the ongoing incarceration of activists in Egypt beyond the…

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Activism in Process: Projects from Afghanistan, Puerto Rico, and Tunisia

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Join us for a panel discussion with CHRA’s current collaborators in “Activism in Process”. CHRA collaborates annually with a group of activists and organizers who are leading grassroots efforts in their communities. For our first “Activism in Process”, we are bringing together Badr Baabou from Damj (a LGBTQ++ rights organization based in Tunisia); Ernesto Pujol (a social choreographer based in…

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UNDERCOOKED Works by MA in Human Rights & the Arts

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Undercooked features works-in-progress by the current MA students at the Center for Human Rights and the Arts. Developed as part of their practice-based core course with Tania El Khoury this spring (HRA 504: Collaborations and Community-based Art), all of the projects engage in different ways with the politics of food and land. The work includes performance, music, sound, murals, and…

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Putting the Cooker on Low

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World premiere of a CHRA digital commission, featuring a Q&A with artist Ama Josephine Budge and writer Dr. Chelsea M. Frazier, moderated by Dr. J.T. Roane (Arizona State University). Putting the Cooker on Low explores the daily rituals that allow Black women, femmes and non-binary folk to keep creating in the midst of spiritual, emotional, familial, societal and ecological crises….

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