Cassandra with a flood in her mouth: A chorus, a riot, a cult, a swarm

About

How do we relate to land, place, and ecologies under conditions of destabilization and contamination? Insurgent worlding practices and queerspaces at the edges of imagination are given form in this selection of works by Sofía Córdova, Rana & Sara Hamadeh, Erin Johnson, Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, and Bassem Saad. Mixing fabulation with fact, the films are rehearsals toward collective social formations that undo harmful distinctions between humans and other beings. This program presents work that reimagines relationships to the earthly and the elemental while emphasizing that we are inseparable from the material ecologies of place.

 

Presented in English and Spanish with English subtitles.

The in-person program includes a post-screening talk with Sofía Córdova and Erin Johnson, moderated by Caitlin Berrigan and Suzy Halajian.

This screening develops from the emergent themes, associations, and lines of thought stemming from Caitlin Berrigan’s solo exhibition at JOAN February-April 2023, curated by Suzy Halajian.

The program is co-curated by Caitlin Berrigan and Suzy Halajian.

about the artists

Caitlin Berrigan

Caitlin Berrigan works as a visual artist, writer, and researcher. Her early works address viruses and spatial choreographies of capitalism and contagion. Recent works explore poetics and queer science fiction as world-making practices through instruments and moving image. She has been developing a speculative cosmology, Imaginary Explosions, that blends research science with art and fiction. The episodic series centers around geological animacies as transfeminist scientists cooperate with the desires of the mineral earth to simultaneously erupt all volcanoes. The work has been the subject of a book (Broken Dimanche Press, 2018), a solo show at Art in General reviewed in Artforum (2019), and a world premiere in Berlinale Forum’s Expanded Exhibition (2020). She has presented her work at the Whitney Museum, Poetry Project, Henry Art Gallery, Harvard Carpenter Center, Anthology Film Archives, and Ashkal Alwan, among others. Her experimental essays are published in e-flux, Georgia, MARCH, and Duke University Press. She has received fellowships and residencies from the Humboldt Foundation, Skowhegan, Graham Foundation, and Akademie Schloss Solitude. She holds a Master’s in Visual Art from MIT and a BA from Hampshire College. Berrigan has held full-time and visiting faculty positions at NYU Tisch, Bard College Berlin, Harvard, and UMass Boston and is currently a Richter fellow at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna and an artist-in-residence at Caltech-Huntington NASA JPL.

 

Sofía Córdova

Sofía Córdova (born in Carolina, Puerto Rico; based in Oakland) makes work that considers sci-fi alternative history, dance music’s liberatory dimensions, climate change and migration, mystical objects, and most recently, revolution—historical and imagined—within the matrix of class, gender, race, late capitalism, and its technologies. Recent works have included performance, video, music, sculpture, taxidermy, and installation. She is one half of the music duo, XUXA SANTAMARIA. In addition to discrete projects, performances, and albums, the duo collectively scores all of her video and performance work.

Her work has been exhibited and performed nationally and internationally at Tufts University Galleries, SFMOMA, the ASU Museum, The Berkeley Art Museum, the Vincent Price Museum, the Wattis Institute, and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. The same is part of Pier 24’s and The Kadist’s permanent collections. She has recently participated in residencies at Eyebeam (New York); Headlands Center for the Arts (Sausalito, California); Mills College Museum (Oakland, California); and the ASU Museum (Phoenix), and composed and choreographed performances for the San Francisco Arts Commission, Merce Cunningham Trust, and Soundwave Biennial. She is a recipient of a Creative Work Fund and has been the subject of a First Look feature in Art in America. Her work was recently featured in Aperture Magazine and will be part of the exhibition no existe un mundo posthuracán: Puerto Rican Art in the Wake of Hurricane Maria at the Whitney Museum this fall.

Instagram  Website

 

Suzy Halajian

Suzy Halajian is a curator and writer based in Los Angeles. She is executive director and curator at JOAN. Her work begins at the intersection of art and politics, treating image making as steeped in colonial pasts and modern surveillance states. She has curated exhibitions and programs at spaces, including Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, ONE Archives at the USC Libraries, The Hammer Museum, and Human Resources (Los Angeles); Oregon Contemporary (Portland, Oregon); Kunstverein (Amsterdam); UKS (Oslo); and the Sursock Museum (Beirut). Halajian serves on the Programming Committee of Human Resources Los Angeles. She was granted The Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers grant for the collaborative journal Georgia and a Curatorial Research Fellowship from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Her writing has been published by ArtEast, BOMB, X-TRA, and Ibraaz, among others. Halajian is a PhD candidate in the Film and Digital Media program at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

 

Rana Hamadeh

Rana Hamadeh is a visual, sound, and performance artist from Lebanon living in the Netherlands. Drawing on curatorial methods within her artistic practice, she develops longstanding projects that manifest as theatrical productions, interactive sound-based system designs and compositions, immersive audio-visual installations, as well as pedagogical setups. Her works generally think through the infrastructures, epistemologies, and technologies of justice. Since 2016, she has been developing a “machine-centric operatic practice,” experimenting with writing and composing, and testing out ideas surrounding “machinic emancipation.” The Destiny Project, launched in 2020, is her newest long-term project, invested primarily in questions surrounding algorithmic justice.

Hamadeh is the recipient of the Dutch Prix de Rome, 2017. Her solo exhibitions were shown internationally at a.o. Edith-Russ-Haus (Oldenburg, 2022); Vienna Secession (Vienna, 2021); Kunsthalle Winterthur (Winterthur, 2019); Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art (Rotterdam, 2017); The Institute of Modern Art (Brisbane, 2016); The Showroom (London, 2016); Nottingham Contemporary (2015); Western Front (Vancouver, 2015); Gallery TPW (Toronto, 2015); and Kiosk (Ghent, 2014). Her work was shown in group exhibitions at a.o. MuHKA (2022); steirischer herbst festival (2020); Sonic Acts festival (2019); the Kochi-Muziris Biennale (2018); SALT (Istanbul, 2018); The New Museum (New York, 2014); e-flux (New York, 2014); The 8th Liverpool Biennial (2014);12th Biennale de Lyon (2013); The Lisson Gallery (2013); and the Van Abbemuseum (2008/2011).

 

Sara Hamadeh

Sara Hamadeh is an artist, researcher, and cook based in the Netherlands. Hamadeh has worked as an archivist, musician, film editor, media archeologist, producer, and professional cook over the past years, laying out a patterned practice that continuously concerns itself with the notion of mediation and with evoking fictions as methodologies to navigate and work through the conditions of crises, from financial collapses to warfare. Recently, her work has been focused on food as a vehicle and provocation for notions of grief, militarism, and historical violence. She is currently tutor of “Culinary Materialisms” at the Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam.

 

Erin Johnson

Erin Johnson’s short films and immersive installations interlace documentary, experimental, and narrative filmmaking devices to interrogate notions of collectivity, dissent, and queer identity. In her shape-shifting videos, site-specific performances by artists, biologists, and film extras expose the naturalization of political and economic forces in the production of scientific authority. Johnson received an MFA and Certificate in New Media from UC Berkeley in 2013, attended Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture in 2019, and recently completed residencies at Pioneer Works (Brooklyn, New York), Jan van Eyck Academie (Maastricht, Netherlands), Lower Manhattan Community Council, Hidrante (San Juan, Puerto Rico), and Lighthouse Works (Fishers Island, New York). She is chair of the Department of Film and Video at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Her work has recently been exhibited or screened at MOCA Toronto (Toronto), Munchmuseet (Oslo), Times Square Arts (New York), deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum (Boston), Billytown (The Hague), and Telfair Museums (Savannah, Georgia).

Instagram  Website

 

Beatriz Santiago Muñoz

Beatriz Santiago Muñoz (born 1972, San Juan, Puerto Rico) is an artist whose expanded moving image work is entangled with Boalian theater, expanded cinema, and feminist practices. She tends to work with non-actors and incorporates improvisation into her process. Her recent work is on the sensorial unconscious of anti-colonial movements, with everyday poetic thought and feminist experiments with language and narrative. Recent solo exhibitions include: Oriana in PIVO, Sao Paulo, the 34th Sao Paulo Biennial; The Navel of the Dream at Kuunstinstitut Melly; Poetic Disorder in the Momenta Biennale; and Gosila in Der Tank, Basel. Her work is part of public and private collections, such as the Museum of Modern Art, Kadist, and Guggenheim, among others. She has received a Creative Capital grant, a USA Fellowship, a Herb Alpert Award in the Arts, and the 2021 Artes Mundi Prize, shared among all six nominees.

Instagram

 

Bassem Saad

Bassem Saad is an artist and writer born in Beirut on September 11. Their work explores historical rupture, infrastructure, spontaneity, and difference, through film, performance, and sculpture, as well as through essays and fiction. With an emphasis on past and present forms of struggle, they attempt to place scenes of intersubjective exchange within their world-historical frames. Saad’s work has been presented and screened at MoMA, CPH:DOX, Busan Biennale, and Transmediale. Their most recent film, Congress of Idling Persons, received Special Mention in the New:Vision Award category at CPH:DOX 2022. Their writing appears in Jadaliyya, Failed Architecture, and The Funambulist. They are currently a fellow at the Berlin Program for Artists.

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FILMS

To be sound is to be solid (2022) 

Dir. Erin Johnson, 15 min.

 

Standard_Deviation (Work-in-Progress) (2021) 

Dir. Rana Hamadeh in collaboration with Sara Hamadeh, 22 min.

 

SIN AGUA i. expectation crowned by its own desire (2017) 

Dir. Sofía Córdova, 16 min.

 

Ojos para mis enemigos (2014) 

Dir. Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, 14 min.

 

Kink Retrograde (2022) 

Dir. Bassem Saad, 18 min.