Iman Issa
Proposal for an Iraq War Memorial, 2007
Video, colour, sound, 5:21 Min.
Voice-over: Felicity Palmer
Courtesy the artist

Iman Issa

January 07 – January 24, 2010

Invited by Mai Abu ElDahab (Director, Objectif Exhibitions, Antwerp)

»Proposal for an Iraq War Memorial« (2007)

Iman Issa’s short video »Proposal for an Iraq War Memorial« was produced in 2007 in response to a commission by the Institute of Contemporary Art (London) for an exhibition that asked artists to contemplate what such a memorial might look like. Issa’s starting point for her contribution, primarily tackles the issue of the vantage point. Who is contemplating this memorial, from what position, and what is at stake?

The video is composed of a selection of found images and footage of Baghdad, news coverage of the war, clips from the film »The Thief of Baghdad« (1940), and coupled with a voice-over of a text written by the artist. Precisely edited, the video questions the position of the narrator, whose nonchalant response to horrific images is that of a news viewer numbed by information overflow. At its core, Issa’s video destabilizes the authority of the voice, because the narrator’s position is indifferent. Once it is detached from the images on view and another time it is deliberately implicated in them.

Mai Abu ElDahab

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