Lindsay Seers and Keith Sargent: Nowhere Less Now3 [flying saucer]
26 September–26 December 2020
The Flying Saucer, Dasman, Sharjah
Sharjah Art Foundation (SAF) presents Lindsay Seers and Keith Sargent: Nowhere Less Now3 [flying saucer], the latest iteration of Seers’ long-term episodic work ‘Nowhere Less Now’, co-commissioned and produced by SAF, Artangel, and the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA). Conceptually structured around Henri Bergson's philosophy of memory, ‘Nowhere Less Now’ is presented in cycles and addresses the dark legacy of British colonialism, building on Seers’ journey through history in search of (the) truth. The Sharjah edition of the work, Nowhere Less Now3 [flying saucer], differs from previous episodes in that it responds to and is embedded in a building of Googie architecture, Sharjah’s iconic Flying Saucer. Marking the reopening of The Flying Saucer, this is the first major presentation at the venue since its renovation.
Basing this iteration of the work on the Gulf Weekly Mirror’s 1978 report about the sighting of a flying saucer hovering over Dubai, Seers uses the architectural elements of the building to narrate an alien’s landing on Earth and its fascination with the forces impelling humans to move to a pulse, a rhythm. The multimedia installation includes several sculptural elements and a film that follows an alien as it attempts to understand life on Earth from geometry, gestures and movements. Weaving this narrative together with the lives of two additional protagonists, the Princess of Zanzibar (Emily Ruete) and German actress and dancer Leni Riefenstahl, the film focuses on the social and cultural implications of dancing, fascism and colonialism. All the while, we are left to question whether we can find a way to move beyond language to nuanced deep thought that transcends cultural and biological stereotyping and reorders time as nonlinear—the present is immanent and not defined by the past and the future. The work has particular resonance in the star-shaped Flying Saucer building, which was built next to a British military encampment in the mid-1970s and stood on the boundary of territories between the British military—an ‘alien’ entity in the region—and the indigenous people.
‘Nowhere Less Now’ was originally presented in 2012 at the Tin Tabernacle in Kilburn, London, by Artangel, an acclaimed London-based non-profit arts organisation known for its adventurous artist commissions that have been realised in unusual sites and locations across the United Kingdom and around the world. The second iteration of the work, Nowhere Less Now 2, was presented in 2014 at the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) as part of a group exhibition titled The Red Queen. ‘Nowhere Less Now’ has been commissioned and produced by Artangel, London; Sharjah Art Foundation; and the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), Hobart, Australia.
Nowhere Less Now3 [flying saucer] will inaugurate the newly renovated Flying Saucer building, a Sharjah architectural landmark built in the mid-1970s and in use as a SAF venue since 2015. The futuristic Brutalist building—which originally housed a one-stop-shop restaurant, newsstand, tobacconist, gift shop, patisserie and delicatessen—recently underwent a major renovation to restore the structure’s original silhouette and incorporate new spaces for community gathering around art, public programmes and events. The Flying Saucer was acquired by the Foundation in 2012.
This exhibition is part of Sharjah Art Foundation’s autumn 2020 season, which also includes major solo exhibitions by artists Tarek Atoui and Zarina Bhimji and the return of Sharjah Film Platform and FOCAL POINT. These two annual Foundation programmes highlight local, regional and international filmmakers and publishers, respectively.
To ensure the comfort and safety of our community and adhere to social distancing guidelines, visitors interested in viewing any of the autumn exhibitions should book a slot in advance on this link or through our website. Enhanced sanitation and disinfection will take place between visits in line with recommendations from health authorities. The exhibitions are free to attend and open to all. However, advance booking is highly encouraged. Read more about our new safety policies here.
To learn more, visit sharjahart.org
About Lindsay Seers
Lindsay Seers’ artistic practice goes beyond simple storytelling to become a network in which conceptual investigation, a desire for photography to act as evidence, historical and personal contexts, and the camera itself merge. She has received a number of awards and grants, including a major award for a new work from the Wellcome Trust (2016); Le Jeu de Paume production award for the Toulouse Festival, France (2013); a Production Programme Grant, Sharjah Art Foundation (2012); the Paul Hamlyn Award, UK (2010); the Film London and Channel 4 Jarman Award (2009); and a broadcast commission for Channel 4’s 3 Minute Wonder series (2009).
Seers earned a BA Hons in Sculpture and Media from the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London (1994), and a Master of Fine Art from Goldsmiths, University of London (2001). Born in 1966 in Mauritius, Seers lives on the Isle of Sheppey, UK, and works in Sheerness and London.
About Keith Sargent
Keith Sargent is an artist, filmmaker, graphic designer and educator. In addition to producing art exhibitions and international trade shows, he is a director of the multidisciplinary design company b#1 (buildingnumberone).
He has collaborated with Lindsay Seers on art installations and films, producing animations, film sequences and design work for Care(less), Lincoln Castle, UK (2020); Every Thought There Ever Was, Focal Point Gallery, London (2018); Mental Metal (Casebooks Project), Ambika P3, London (2017); and Mental Matter2, Andaz Hotel, Art Night, London (2017).
About Sharjah Art Foundation
Sharjah Art Foundation is an advocate, catalyst and producer of contemporary art within the Emirate of Sharjah and the surrounding region, in dialogue with the international arts community. Under the leadership of founder Hoor Al Qasimi, a curator and artist, the foundation advances an experimental and wide-ranging programmatic model that supports the production and presentation of contemporary art, preserves and celebrates the distinct culture of the region and encourages a shared understanding of the transformational role of art. The foundation’s core initiatives include the long-running Sharjah Biennial, featuring contemporary artists from around the world; the annual March Meeting, a convening of international arts professionals and artists; grants and residencies for artists, curators and cultural producers; ambitious and experimental commissions; and a range of travelling exhibitions and scholarly publications.
Established in 2009 to expand programmes beyond the Sharjah Biennial, which launched in 1993, the foundation is a critical resource for artists and cultural organisations in the Gulf and a conduit for local, regional and international developments in contemporary art. The foundation’s deep commitment to developing and sustaining the cultural life and heritage of Sharjah is reflected through year-round exhibitions, performances, screenings and educational programmes in the city of Sharjah and across the Emirate, often hosted in historic buildings that have been repurposed as cultural and community centres. A growing collection reflects the foundation’s support of contemporary artists in the realisation of new work and its recognition of the contributions made by pioneering modern artists from the region and around the world. Sharjah Art Foundation is a legally independent public body established by Emiri Decree and supported by government funding, grants from national and international non-profits and cultural organisations, corporate sponsors and individual patrons. All exhibitions and events are free and open to the public.
Sharjah is the third-largest of the seven United Arab Emirates, and the only one bridging the Arabian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. Reflecting the deep commitment to the arts, architectural preservation and cultural education embraced by its ruler, Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Sharjah is home to more than 20 museums and has long been known as the cultural hub of the United Arab Emirates. In 1998, it was named UNESCO's 'Arab Capital of Culture' and was designated the UNESCO ‘World Book Capital’ for the year 2019.
Sharjah Art Foundation:
Alyazeyah Al Reyaysa, firstname.lastname@example.org, +971(0)65444113