Taking Shape: New Perspectives on Arab Abstraction
In conjunction with the exhibition Taking Shape: Abstraction from the Arab World, 1950s–1980s
Note: This event is now being offered as a 3-session webinar series on May 28, June 4, and June 18. RSVPs required; see program listings on those dates for links to sign up.
Until the late 1960s, 20th-century art from North Africa and the Middle East was greatly understudied. Yet by the turn of the millennium, scholars were actively engaged in creating a global art history. Among questions to be considered are: Why did modern artists from these regions choose to create nonfigurative works? How can we approach Arab abstraction without falling back on borrowed methodologies?
Speakers include Iftikhar Dadi, Associate Professor of History of Art and Visual Studies, Cornell University; Hannah Feldman, Associate Professor of Art History, Northwestern University; Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi, Founder, Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE; Alex Dika Seggerman, Assistant Professor of Islamic Art History, Rutgers University Newark; Nada Shabout, Professor of Art History, University of North Texas; Suheyla Takesh, Curator, Barjeel Art Foundation, and co-curator of the exhibition; and others. Moderated by Pepe Karmel, Associate Professor of Art History, NYU, and Sarah-Neel Smith, Assistant Professor of Art History, Theory, and Criticism, Maryland Institute College of Art.
Co-sponsored by NYU’s Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies, ArteEast, and Grey Art Gallery.