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Orientalism & Ephemera

November 16, 2006 - February 11, 2007

AWE Gallery

Through a display of souvenirs, pamphlets, postcards, photographs, and the work of several contemporary artists, this exhibition explores the conceptof orientalism and Arab cultural identity. With material collected from Cairo, Alexandria, Beirut, Jerusalem, Baghdad, Vienna, Istanbul, Paris, Barcelona, and even Toronto and London, Ontario, curator Jamelie Hassan presents an array of objects and images that explore the way in which the ‘east’ has been represented within western culture.

The material presented draws on Hassan’s reading of Edward Said’s book Orientalism (1979). In this groundbreaking publication, Said presented the Orient not as an alien culture, but as an integral and historical part of European civilization. Through this exhibition, Hassan reflects upon this longstanding and complex relationship. It also demonstrates the continued presence of the east within our everday experience, providing an alternative vision of Arab and Muslim identity that counters the often-distorted images of contemporary international conflict. Hassan’s longstanding interest in this subject informs the selection and display of objects in this exhibition. 

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