With less than a month to go before our last exhibition of 2015 draws to a close, we invite you to reflect on some of The Mosaic Rooms 2015 highlights – and get a special preview of what’s in store for next year…
This year we are delighted to have presented six exhibitions, many featured new work or were the first solo shows by this exciting range of artists. We opened 2015 with David Birkin’s Mouths At The Invisible Event, followed by Hrair Sarkissian’s Imagined Futures; Corinne Silva’s Garden State; I Spy with My Little Eye… a group exhibition guest curated by Sam Bardaouil and Till Fellrath of Art Reoriented as part of Shubbak; and Dia Batal’s Tracing Landscapes for London Design Festival. Our final exhibition of the year (on show now, until 12 December) is Marwan’s Not Towards Home, But The Horizon.
We hope you found our exhibitions inspiring and intellectually challenging. This year’s projects have certainly involved some of our most ambitious exhibition and artwork productions to-date! These have even extended beyond the gallery walls – did you see a 30ft replica of a U.S. military surveillance blimp hovering above the gallery in February (David Birkin’s installation The Evidence of Absence)?
Over the course of 2015 we presented over 50 multidisciplinary events and a number of Learning and Engagement projects – including upcycling workshops with Smallworld Urbanism, two drawing and multimedia workshops with Dia Batal and an ongoing project with Nour Festival of Arts. We loved our sustainable pop-up garden by Smallworld Urbanism (accompanying Garden State) so much we decided to keep it! Our 2015 events programme included supper clubs, talks, book launches, film screenings, live art and music performances – and our first ever dance event.
Highlights included: our sold out symposium Disappearing Cities of the Arab World at British Museum, our Edward W. Said. London Lecture with Daniel Barenboim at Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre (watch here), writer Nawal El Saadawi in conversation with Dr Shereen El Feki (watch here), and Raja Shehadeh’s book launch Language of War, Language of Peace.
We also engaged in a range of current issues, from the use of drones, to the banned books in Guatanamo bay, to ISIS and the death of the Arab Spring, to the war in Gaza last year. Check out our recorded lectures page to catchup on what you missed now!
New 2015 Collaborations & Initiatives
2015 included some new exhibition collaborations – Garden State was co-produced with Ffotogallery, Cardiff, and UAL Photography and the Archive Research Centre (PARC), London College of Communication. I Spy With My Little Eye has toured to Casa Arabe in Madrid and will be on its way to its second venue in Cordoba for 2016. The work Front Line by Hrair Sarkissian, which was produced for his solo show here, was recently shown at Camera Austria in Graz. The Mosaic Rooms and ICA co-presented Dor Guez’s Sick Man Of Europe. We are also pleased to have supported Jumana Manna’s first UK solo show at Chisenhale Gallery. Our exhibitions also formed part of major London festivals including Shubbak, London Festival of Architecture, London Design Festival and Nour. We hope to work with you all again in the near future!
2015 saw The Mosaic Rooms publish our first crowdfunded artist’s book Background by Hrair Sarkissian, which was selected as part of the Art Basel Kickstarter Crowdfunding Initiative. Thank you to all of you who supported this!
Our first limited edition artworks in collaboration with The Mosaic Rooms exhibited artists (available in our bookshop and online here) launched as well. All proceeds from these go to supporting our programme and the artists.
Special thanks also go to the following that have helped support our exhibitions and artists this year: ATHR, Dina & Mohamad Ali Zameli, Mohammed Hafiz, Arts Council England, Nour Festival, a/political.
And of course most importantly thank you to all of you, our audience! We look forward to warmly welcoming you back in 2016 to discover new and exciting, as well as familiar names, to engage in new ideas, contemporary issues, and to be challenged and inspired!
Coming up next year…
2016 opens with Suspended Accounts, the latest edition of the A.M. Qattan Foundation’s Young Artist of the Year Award (YAYA14). Showcasing the work of these six emerging Palestinian artists, the public programme will also feature a number of events specially curated by the artists. This will be followed by the first UK presentation of the ‘first chapter’ from Hajra Waheed’s Sea Change – an on-going visual novel and multimedia archive, commenced in 2013, which revolves around the journey and disappearance of nine persons in the name of salvation, a better life or new one. We will be showing Chapter 1 – Character 1: In the Rough. We are also thrilled that the 2016 Edward W. Said London Lecture will be given by Naomi Klein!
Keep an eye on our website for updates on our 2016 programme…. Until then we wish you all a happy festive season!
Director, The Mosaic Rooms