Before History

Before History

The Abraaj Group Art Prize 2015

By Yto Barrada

Edited by Omar Kholeif

Distributed for Sternberg Press

Overview

Author(s)

Summary

Before History catalogues the exhibition for the Abraaj Group Art Prize 2015, which includes a new body of work by Yto Barrada, the winner of the prize, and existing work by shortlisted artists Sarnath Banerjee, Setareh Shahbazi, and Mounira Al Solh. The exhibition explores the layering of time through historical artifice. History here is considered as a constructed sphere, constantly in flux, simultaneously being buried and excavated.

In a world of hyper-mediation, how can one construct a sense of an individual history? How does it relate to the sediments of culture? A film at the heart of Yto Barrada's new work, Faux départ (False Start) (2015), questions the veracity of artifacts in the context of modern-day museology. Through a study of paleontology in Morocco, the artist asks: How does one fabricate a history?

This special catalogue consists of two artist books, one by Yto Barrada and the other devised in collaboration with the shortlisted artists. Together they function as a sculptural object, layering on top of each other.

Copublished with the Abraaj Group

Contributors Mirene Arsanios, Yto Barrada, Sarnath Banerjee, Omar Kholeif, Setareh Shahbazi, Mounira Al Solh

Paperback

$34.00 T ISBN: 9783956791215 232 pp. | 7.75 in x 10.75 in 133 color illus., 14 b&w illus.

Not for sale in Europe or the UK.

Editors

Omar Kholeif

Omar Kholeif, a writer, curator, and cultural historian, is Director of Collections and Senior Curator at Sharjah Art Foundation. Named a “Game-changer” by British GQ and one of the “Art World's Global Influencers” by the international art magazine Apollo, he has curated more than 100 exhibitions and special projects. He is the editor of the Whitechapel Gallery/MIT Press volume Moving Image; editor of You Are Here: Art After the Internet; and the author of Goodbye, World! Looking at Art in the Digital Age (Sternberg Press).