Press Release

Monira Al Qadiri. Holy Quarter

  • From March 10 to June 12, 2022
  • Curated by Manuel Cirauqui
  • Film & Video Gallery (103)

From March 10 to June 12, 2022, the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao will be running Monira Al Qadiri, the first exhibition of 2022 in the Film & Video Gallery, a museum space devoted to showing fundamental works of video and moving image art, and sound and video installations.

On this occasion, the work on view is a video and sculpture installation by Monira Al Qadiri (born 1983), a Kuwaiti artist born in Senegal and currently living in Berlin. Using multiple mediums, Al Qadiri’s work explores unchartered territory of colonial history, oil cultures and the formation of identities in the Middle East. In a region whose geostrategic influence is closely tied to its energy resources, local ways of life have undergone radical transformation at a time when the impact of industry on the planet’s ecosystems has been accelerating. In its desert sand landscapes, which record the highest temperatures on the globe, the artist finds potential narratives that project us simultaneously toward a prehistoric past and toward an increasingly less hypothetical future of global overwarming and desertification.

Holy Quarter (2020) takes us on a dreamlike journey through the vast expanse known as Rub’ al Khali that covers parts of Saudi Arabia, Oman, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. The depth of the film’s aerial shots is only comparable to the deepness of its soundtrack, composed by Fatima Al Qadiri, the artist’s sister and frequent collaborator.



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