Conceived as a forum for dialogue between cultures, World Nomads is FIAF’s biennial celebration of 21st-century transculturalism in the Francophone world. This May, the festival returns for its fifth edition to explore the rich arts and culture of Tunisia just two years after the Arab Spring.
Geographically situated at the epicenter of the European, Maghreb, and African worlds, Tunisia has served as an essential point of passage for people and ideas since ancient times. Today, following the events of January 2011, a groundswell of artistic innovation and experimentation permeates the country, anchoring it as a hub for intellectual and artistic dialogue reaching far beyond the Mediterranean region.
World Nomads Tunisia brings some of the most influential contemporary artistic figures active in Tunisia today to New York, including dynamic female leaders who are re-energizing Tunisia. Co-presented with leading Tunisian and U.S. cultural institutions, the festival is dedicated to advancing critical thinking about this vibrant country as it carves out a new identity post-revolution.
World Nomads Tunisia is presented under the direction of Marie-Monique Steckel, President of FIAF; Lili Chopra, Artistic Director of FIAF; Tony Guerrero, Director of Visual Arts at FIAF; Elizabeth Krief Manardo, Advisor and President of the World Nomads Tunisia Committee; Leila Souissi, Co-curator of Visual Arts; and Karim Maatoug, Programming Advisor.
Opening night Selma & Sofiane Ouissi : Laaroussa
Friday, May 3 from 7–8pm
Tunisian choreographers Selma and Sofiane Ouissi—two major figures in the Arab dance scene present a poetic 12-minute video work, shown on the festival’s opening night. The brother-sister pair appear on film, performing a dance inspired by the process and technique of traditional women potters living in Sejnane, Tunisia. Through their abstract and sensual choreography, the duo honor and promote this disappearing art form, practiced solely by women.
Free & open to the public.
Selma & Sofiane Ouissi - ©David Douvrard
The After Revolution at IDEAS CITY Festival
Saturday, May 4 from 11am–6pm
World Nomads Tunisia invites you to view work and meet prolific Tunisian graffiti artists :
at the New Museum’s biennial outdoor street fair, IDEAS CITY. Bring your own message of peace to share on canvases prepared by the artists.
New Museum’s IDEAS CITY Festival -Free & open to the public.
Visit newmuseum.org/ideascity for info.
The After Revolution visual arts program is curated by Tunisian based Leila Souissi.
The After Revolution at White Box
Saturday– Saturday, May 4–18
Opening Reception Saturday, May 4 from 5–8pm
Following the revolution in 2011, Tunisian photographers, required to work with a license under President Ben Ali’s regime, took to the streets to freely capture the momentous reaction to the Arab Spring in real-time. World Nomads Tunisia presents photographs from seven contemporary Tunisian photographers, offering a remarkable view of these important events taken by those who lived through them.
White Box - Free & open to the public.
The role of women in Tunisian society
Monday, May 6 at 12:30pm
Join leading Tunisian women for a lunchtime discussion about the significant and growing role of women as drivers of social, artistic, and political change following the Arab Spring.
Keynote Speaker :Yamina Benguigui, French Minister of Francophonie;
Dora Bouchoucha, Film Producer & Founder of Nomadis Images;
Kenza Fourati, Model & Blogger;
Amna Guellali, Director of Human Rights Watch Tunisia;
Lina Lazaar Jameel, Sotheby’s International Contemporary Art Specialist;
Leila Souissi, Tunisian Contemporary Arts Specialist.
FIAF Members $35
Tickets include lunch & wine.
Reserved seating. In English.
Art, Women & Politics
Tuesday, May 7 at 1pm
Following the success of a livestreamed talk at White Box during the Arab Spring in 2011, World Nomads Tunisia presents an international live-streamed discussion with influential Tunisian women
who will speak about working in the arts in present-day Tunisia.
Amna Guellali, Director of Human Rights Watch Tunisia;
Lina Lazaar Jameel;
And via Skype:
Hélé Béji, Writer;
El Iza Mohamedou, Chief Political Analyst at the African Development Bank.
Free & open to the public. In English.
The After Revolution
Wednesday–Saturday, May 8–June 1
The FIAF Gallery offers a view of the Revolution’s impact as captured through paintings, photography, and video by five contemporary Tunisian artists, whose work is
being shown in New York for the first time. Curated by Tunisian based Leila Souissi, the exhibition features work by four female artists
who spotlight the challenges they have faced not just as artists, but also as women.
Featuring work by :
Amel Ben Attia,
Mouna Jemal Siala
Mohamed Ben Slama.
FIAF Gallery Free & open to the public.
©Mohamed Ben Slama
The After Revolution At 5 pointz
Sunday–Friday, May 12–31
Opening Reception Sunday, May 12 from 6–8pm
Forbidden under President Ben Ali, street art has quickly become an important outlet for expression since the Revolution. World Nomads Tunisia welcomes internationally renowned Tunisian graffiti artists, El Seed and Jaye, to New York for the first time to create original works in collaboration with New York-based “writers,” including Meres Ones, founder of 5Pointz.
Followed by a film crew, eL Seed and Jaye will bring their unique style with messages of tolerance and peace to walls
in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens at 5Pointz, considered the epicenter of the world’s graffiti scene.
On Sunday, May 12, view their work and the film documenting their creations around New York City during a celebratory reception at 5 pointz.
© Rim Temimi
Press : artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com