Curated by Blair Murphy
November 17 – December 10, 2017
Opening Reception: Friday, November 17, 7pm-9pm
Artist Talk: Sunday, December 3, 5pm
Ebtisam Abdulaziz’s work grapples with the concept of freedom, exploring the ways that notions of personal liberation are shaped by our social roles–including gender, race, religion, and national identity. Blue Freedom includes videos and photographs documenting performances carried out by the artist both in her native United Arab Emirates and since moving to the United States. Her work draws on her own experience moving through the world–as a woman in the UAE and, more recently, as a Muslim woman and person of color in the contemporary USA. Utilizing the body and drawing influences from utopian and modernist aesthetics, Abdulaziz creates poetic visual tableaus that symbolize the restrictions of social norms and imagine possibilities for liberation.
Ebtisam Abdulaziz is a multidisciplinary artist & writer from the United Arab Emirates currently based in Washington, DC. She was included in the inaugural pavilions of the United Arab Emirates and the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (ADACH) at the 53rd Venice Biennale, as well as in the 7th & 10th Sharjah Biennials. Other exhibitions include Languages of the Desert at the Kunst Museum (Bonn, Germany), Arab Express at The Mori Art Museum (Tokyo, Japan), 25 years of Arab Creativity at The Institut du Monde Arabe (Paris, France), Inventing The World: The Artist as a Citizen for the Benin Biennial 2012, and Dubai Next, a collaboration between the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority and Vitra Design Museum for Art Basel 2008. Her work was included in Past Forward: Contemporary Art from the Emirates, which was organized by Meridian International Center (Washington, DC) and traveled to Los Angeles, Texas, Michigan, Kentucky, and Washington State. She has recently been included in exhibitions at Guggenheim Abu Dhabi (Abu Dhabi, UAE), New York University Abu Dhabi (Abu Dhabi, UAE), Cara Gallery (New York, NY) and Rhizome (Washington, DC).
Image: Ebtisam Abdulaziz, Blue Freedom, 2013