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Mega Future – Speculative Fiction and Worldbuilding

Film & Discussion

19/11/20 7pm


The live event is today, Thursday 19 November at 7.00 PM (GMT). Please ensure that you are online on time. Join us live here: https://www.twitch.tv/themosaicrooms
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Enjoy a screening of Mariam Mekiwi’s short film Before I Forget, a science-fiction story set in an indistinct coastal region, between land and sea, above and below water. The screening will be followed by a conversation between filmmaker Mariam Mekiwi, visual artist and architect Mostafa Elbaroody, Nada Bakr and Heba Y. Amin and presents the first part of a programme curated by new media platform Cairotronica.

Dedicated to the theme of Mega Future, this selection of short films and videos tests how fiction can be used as a critical tool to expand our understanding of present realities and imagine future narratives. The film and conversation look into the manifold possibilities of speculative fiction as a tool for imagining alternative futures and a means of radical world building.

Mega Future explores how the notion of technology is deeply intertwined with constructing future scenarios. Emerging, smart technologies are shaping the future by attempting to fix failures in our present reality. It is easier to imagine such a technology-driven and all-encompassing future than thinking of alternatives. Who determines this concept of a future and for whom? And how is this future communicated to us in the present? Alternatives are lacking, yet most needed to discuss potential ways of being and to envision counter-narratives that, instead of succumbing to a reality prescribed by technology, imagine how things could be.

Before I Forget | dir. Mariam Mekiwi | 2018 | 31 min

Cairotronica is a Cairo-based platform for new media arts that supports and enables practices from Egypt and the region to operate at the intersection of art, science, and technology. Established in 2016, it aims to inspire a regional narrative driven by experimental knowledge production and critical thinking, to engage in re-imagining possible scenarios of the future with practitioners across disciplines.

Nada Bakr is an independent curator, researcher, and cultural manager based in Berlin. Her research-driven projects straddle the fields of visual arts, digital culture and networked activism, and unfold between Berlin and Cairo. Bakr is Community and Project Manager at Disruption Network Lab, Berlin, and Managing Director and Co-Curator of Cairotronica.

Mariam Mekiwi is a film editor and filmmaker from Alexandria and currently based in Berlin, where she is an associate fellow of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at the University of the Arts in Berlin UdK with her feature film project EL Markebba EL OMM – mothership. She completed her MFA at the University of the Arts in Hamburg HfBk in 2017. Her fiction film Abl ma ansa – Before I forget premiered at the Berlinale in 2018 and was nominated to the FIRST STEPS AWARDS in the same year. Her work circulated in various film festivals and art venues like the Sharjah film platform, Oberhausen film festival, Contemporary Image Collective Cairo CIC, Haifa Independent film festival, Hamburger Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe among others.

Mostafa Elbaroody is a Cairo-based visual artist and architect. Elbaroody’s artistic practice sits between architecture and new media and explores speculative approaches to world building by experimenting with visual programming, game design and animation.

This event is part of the public programme for the exhibition Heba Y. Amin – When I see the future, I close my eyes.

Images 1-3: Mariam Mekiwi, Before I Forget, film stills, 2018. Courtesy of Mariam Mekiwi.

Images 4-5: Mostafa Elbaroody, Phantasm, 2019. Courtesy of Mostafa Elbaroody.

Images 6-7: Mostafa Elbaroody, Mapping Possibilities, audio-visual performance with Nada Elshazly, 2019. Courtesy of Mostafa Elbaroody.




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