While visiting San Francisco, I was pleasantly surprised to come across an exhibition at the San Francisco Museum of Modern art (SFMOMA) featuring works by Middle Eastern artists Yto Barrada, Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige, Lamia Joreige, Akram Zaatari, and Graziella and Jalal Toufic. These artists’ works were featured in an exhibition titled ‘Six Lines of Flight: Shifting Geographies in Contemporary Art.’
The SFMOMA description of the exhibition:
“This international group exhibition convenes artists from six cities around the globe that have become burgeoning artistic centers: Beirut, Lebanon; Cali, Colombia; Cluj, Romania; Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; San Francisco, United States; and Tangier, Morocco. All of these places have active art communities that extend beyond their own regions to become international places of exchange. The exhibition showcases the work of artists who have developed institutions, collectives, or associations that have had a major impact on their respective communities; the contributing artists include Yto Barrada, Tiffany Chung, Wilson Diaz, Futurefarmers, Adrian Ghenie, Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige, Helena Producciones, Lamia Joreige, Dinh Q. Lê, Victor Man, Oscar Muñoz, Ciprian Muresan, Luis Ospina and Carlos Mayolo, The Propeller Group, Graziella and Jalal Toufic, and Akram Zaatari. In bringing together work by artists whose efforts have anchored each city’s cultural scene, this exhibition illuminates the dynamic, global, interconnected spirit of 21st-century art.” (Source: http://www.sfmoma.org/exhib_events/exhibitions/446#ixzz298Hi2bZM
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art)
The exhibition was packed with people. It’s a great sign that Middle Eastern art is being exhibited in one of the West Coast’s most prominent museums. With all the great events that are going on in London, Middle Eastern art needs more endeavors in the USA. The only way to increase American interest in Middle Eastern art is to get the renowned American institutions to pay more attention to works from the region. Museums such as SFMOMA, LACMA, and the Met have recently began acquiring work by Middle Eastern artists, so that in itself is already a positive signal.
Unfortunately no pictures of the exhibition were allowed to be taken. Check out the exhibition web page here: