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Lecture and Conversation: Tender Distances

“I want to deviate from conventional understandings of images. It’s clear that visibility does not presuppose anything. Many struggles are hyper-visible, and yet we still cannot see them, let alone hear their claims exactly as they are uttered. Why is it that we still cannot see what we’re actually seeing?”

Oraib Toukan has a fascination with the life of images. Through a diverse body of work that includes film, photography, and text, she explores alternative, native, and vernacular understandings of images. In this talk, she will explore words from the rich lexicon of the Arabic language and its deliberations on images at large, and suffering in particular. She departs from the Arabic term turbeh (soil grain) as used by the Palestinian pedagogue Munir Fasheh, which purports that knowledge can only ever spring from the grain of the earth.Oraib Toukan is an artist, writer, and educator. She is currently a EUME fellow at the Forum Transregionale Studien in Berlin and was a Clarendon scholar at the University of Oxford, Ruskin School of Art, where she completed her PhD in 2019. She is the author of the book Sundry Modernism: Materials for a Study of Palestinian Modernism (2017) and the essay-films 

Via Dolorosa (2021), Offing (2021), and When Things Occur (2017), among others. Until 2015 she served as head of the arts division and Media Studies program at Al-Quds Bard College; she also was the 2017 Mercator postdoctoral fellow in the Cultures of Critique DFG research training group at Leuphana University. Her works have been shown at KW Institute for Contemporary Art and Akademie der Künste in Berlin, CCA Glasgow, Mori Art Museum, Asia Pacific Triennial, Istanbul Biennial, and Biennale für aktuelle Fotografie at Heidelberger Kunstverein.

Featuring a musical performance by Itamar Carmeli (piano).

Presented in English.

Admission is free, registration is required.
Additional information
Participating artists
Dr. Oraib Toukan
Prof. Dr. Jacob Eder
Itamar Carmeli