الفلق // al-Falaq by Alia Ali
Date(s) - 03/19/2023 - 12/31/2023
the Arab American National Museum
الفلق // al-Falaq by Alia Ali is a site-specific multimedia sculpture
A “museum within a museum” in the form of a Yemeni Futurist Starship named الفلق // al-Falaq, this starship is a manifestation of actively reclaiming looted Yemeni artifacts housed in famous collections in Europe and the U.S. It takes on the form of an octopus sculpture suspended under the AANM dome, with 81 digital screens along the tentacles, displaying a range of experimental videos. The result is an impressive constellation of multi-channel video installations that move vertically across the multiple stories of the Museum’s atrium. The content of the videos embraces a variety of objects, ideas and heritage that الفلق // al-Falaq takes back from Earth to carry into the galaxy towards the Red Star. This notion comes at a moment in time where Yemen is experiencing its seventh year of war and on Earth where there are less and less places for Yemenis to move and exist. By investigating histories of the distant past, Ali addresses the realities of the dystopian present in order to carve out spaces for radically imagined possibilities of the future in what has evolved to be Yemeni Futurism.
Alia Ali was an AANM Artist-in-Residence in 2021-2022, and Commissioned Artist. The Artist + Residents program are funded in part by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
الفلق // al-Falaq is commissioned by the Arab American National Museum, with the generous support of the Andrew Mellon Foundation.
Alia Ali (Arabic: عاليه علي // Sabean: |) is an award-winning Yemeni-Bosnian-U.S. multi-media global artist who has traveled to sixty-seven countries, lived in and between seven, and grown up among five languages. Her practice explores and rescinds accepted cultural binaries, challenges culturally sanctioned oppression, and confronts the dualistic barriers of conflicted notions of gender, politics, media, and citizenship. Recently her work has been acquired by the British Museum, Princeton University and the Tucson Museum of Art and her art is held in a number of private collections across the world. In 2020, Ali was given a solo exhibition at the prestigious New Orleans Museum of Art entitled FLUX (2019-2021). Recently, her work has been featured in the Financial Times, Le Monde, Art Review and Hyperallergic, and her work was presented at ZONAMACO Mexico City in February 2022. www.alia-ali.com