On the occasion of the 10th edition of the Biennial, the curators have proposed a platform for conversation between artists of different backgrounds.
SB10 Music and Performance Programme
Mushrooms and Fig Leaves, 2011
Omar Rajeh Mushrooms and Fig Leaves, 2011
Dance performance, installation
Commissioned by Sharjah Art Foundation
Photo by Alfredo Rubio
A Score for a Biennial
A Score for a Biennial was a series of musical performances that took place through the course of the Biennial's opening week. The programme consisted of complex collaborations, which weaved together storytelling, travelogs and outer body experiences.
If Plot for a Biennial is an event tailored to the treatment of film, a natural progression towards music or A Score for a Biennial imposes itself. Staying true to the constellation of keywords and characters outlined in the curatorial statement, sound and music are lodged particularly among words such as Treason, Devotion and Translation, with the musicians playing the role of the collaborators and experientalists. With this in mind, they engaged in unique and in depth dialogues across griot traditions, free jazz, alt rock, Gnawa devotional music and layered samplings of field recordings.
Sam Shalabi and Alan Bishop, formed a duo, experimenting with highly textured and atmospheric lengthy sound-scapes derived from research conducted in musical traditions from corners of the globe and field recordings in the UAE, the whole layered with their own live instrumental improvisations
Maalem Abdelkébir Merchane and Yusef Lateef, Maalem Abdelkébir regarded as one of the purest voices in Gnawa, the spiritual music of the descendants of black African slaves in Morocco known for its healing powers and incessant percussive trance, and Yusef Lateef a legendary and versatile reed virtuoso and innovator in the African American tradition of autophysiopsychic music (that which comes from one’s spiritual, physical and emotional self)
The programme concluded with Dimi Mint Abba and Amino Belyamani, Dimi Mint Abba is perhaps Mauritania’s most iconic and powerful renditioner: a griot with an incomparable, emotionally charged and passionate voice , and Amino Belyamani is an acclaimed New York pianist known for his rich and layered musical interests, blending African rythms, Arabic melodies, classical structures and experimental jazz.
Mushrooms and Fig Leaves
In this new creation, Omar Rajeh looked into the body; more precisely, he attempted to deconstruct,alienate and re-discover the human body system. Questioning and highlighting different body parts and constituents, the work re-thought the mechanism, qualities and dynamics of the living installation. The body was seen in opposition to its virtual, still framedimage, and the space that envelops it. The body is within architecture.