Courtesy of the artist
Installation view at the ACFNY
Photo by David Plakke
Iraqi artist Wafaa Bilal’s piece, Iraq/Iran, examines the Western idea of Orientalism through playful use of the English language signifiers for these countries—the words “Iraq” and “Iran”. Though the differences between these two countries are significant, their history, culture, and identity tend to be conflated in the West—symbolically underscored by the neon’s loaded color that signifies historically, militarily (the “Green Zone”), and through the seemingly innocuous vehicle of social media (as in the green-tinged “Twitter Revolution”). To the viewer’s eye, this transition between letters q and n is just a blur, and the transitional act of this flickering character functions as a playful, provocative look at intercultural engagement and assumptions.
Currently on view at the Austrian Cultural Forum New York
AN I FOR AN EYE
SEP 18, 2013 – JAN 6, 2014
DAILY 10AM – 6PM | FREE ADMISSION