March 3–April 19, 2014      Alwan338//Foundations in Al Riwaq Art Space and around Block 338 in Adliya, Bahrain
Alwan338 is a large, annual public arts festival in Bahrain. It took place in 2012 and 2013 and I curated the 2014 edition, entitled Alwan338//Foundations. It ran for six weeks and was focused in the neighborhood of Adliya, specifically Block 338. It featured work by 28 visual artists and extensive public programming:
The format of the festival’s 2014 edition is inspired by the fact that Adliya once bordered the sea before land-reclamation extended the natural borders of the island in the 20th century, a practice that has heavily exhilarated in the 21st century.
Alwan338//Foundations addresses the theme of “foundations” in their definition as “grounds on which other structures rest,” thus embodying the tension between inherited conditions and projected constructions, where the present is a blind-spot.
Alwan338//Foundations features newly-commissioned, site-specific artworks that are conceived by 13 international resident artists and 14 Bahrain-based artists. The festival also includes artist talks and workshops conducted by the resident artists, a solo exhibition, research projects, live music, film screenings, and an extensive visual identity and summarising publication.
Bahrain-based artists - Aigerim Aikenova, Ali Mussain Mirza, Brad Niemann, Hanadi Al-Ghanem, Jaffar Al Oraibi, Jenine Sharabi, Maoon Rashed, Mohamed Sharkawy, Mohsin Mubarak, Muna Yateem, Ryan Andrews, Tamara Al Pachachi, Waheeda Malullah, Yasmin Sharabi
Solo exhibition - Hassan Hajjaj
Designer of outdoor area for food, music, screenings - May Yateem
Research projects - Failed Architecture (Architecture), meetings with Robert Kluijver (Contemporary art in the Gulf), Shakshooka (The cultural heritage of regional cuisines, based in Kuwait)
Live music - Zenda Marie, Al Harith & Brothers Band, DJette Kiwi, The Relocators, DJ Hisham T, Ali & Lujain, Majaz
Screenings - Six hour-long episodes from the acclaimed PBS series Art in the 21st Century: Balance, Boundaries, Change, History, Place, Stories
Curatorial assistance - Basma Al-Khayer, Luay Al-Derazi, Zain Al Khalifa
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