Festival: New Radicalism 2020, Art Rotterdam Week

Text by CLOT Magazine

Strategy of Beautification, Sarah Amrani

New Radicalism is a four-day festival around radical new talents in the field of digital art and culture from the Middle East, North Africa and its diasporas (the Netherlands and, in particular, Rotterdam). It takes part during  Art Rotterdam Week from the 6th until the 9th of February 2020. With the hope to breach the often one-sided image of the “Middle East”, the curators, Sofiane Si Merabet, Nouha Ben Yebdri, Khalid Abdel-Hadi and Ibrahim Nehme, from the MENA (diaspora) area, aim to explore new talents in the field of digital art that have worked under the radar, all the more so since they are often overlooked by major museums and cultural institutions.

Western cultures often seem to use words such as Arabic culture, Middle East and Islam in one sentence, but what is, in actuality, the connection between these grand terms? What place does the new generation, the so-called Third-Culture Kids, have in our society while growing up in a culture other than that of their parents? These and other questions will be explored during the festival. With a wide-ranging exhibition, panels, workshops and a lively music program in the evening, New Radicalism welcome this talent from the digital realm that is a voice in the distribution of new narratives of cultural identities of the Middle East and North Africa. 

The participating artists are Sara Sadik, Ali Al Shehabi, Tulip Hazbar, Solenne Tadros, Shukri Lawrence, Yasmine Nasser Diaz, Randa Maroufi, Ghita Skali, Wiame Haddad, Sarah Amrani, Hanane El Ouardani en Mous Lamrabat. In addition to the exhibition, there will be a lecture on Gulf Futurism, a conversation on nationalism in the digital age and a panel on (online) journalism in the digital age. 

The time has come to once more welcome this talent from the digital realm to the physical world and to give them an audience that they deserve—told us Shirin Mirachor, director of New Radicalism, over the email. 

(Media courtesy of the artist)
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