Skip to content Skip to footer links

Listening Session: May amnesia never kiss us on the mouth

Friday, April 22, 2022, 4 pm, Dia Chelsea

Event Details
Friday, April 22, 4–6 pm

Dia Chelsea
537 West 22nd Street
New York, New York

Free. Register for the in-person event here.

New York University’s Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies is hosting an in-person, two-day conference from April 21–22 to conclude its Global Uprising series that began in fall 2020. The conference closes with a listening session hosted by Dia Art Foundation that explores the intersections between sound, performance, and uprising. In conversation with Fred Moten and Alia al-Sabi, Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme will present a series of collected recordings, performances, and sound compositions from their project May amnesia never kiss us on the mouth (2020– ), co-commissioned by Dia and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. The online project launched on December 10, 2020, with Postscript: after everything is extracted, a reflection on the act of mourning. Part II of the project, which launched on March 5, 2022, is an expansion of the digital platform and features the artists’ extensive collection of online recordings of people singing and dancing in communal spaces in Iraq, Palestine, and Syria. These are layered with new performances created with dancer Rima Baransi and electronic musicians Haykal, Julmud, and Makimakkuk, from Palestine.

Casting its gaze on the insurrectionary decade between 2011 and 2021, the listening session invites us to think through the destruction of bodies and the erasure of images and the conditions under which these same bodies and images might once again reappear, materially and digitally. What is the rhythm of uprising and its various afterlives? How does this rhythm live on in the performative body? How do certain rituals of voice and dance testify at once to both a collective dispossession and endurance, even in the absence of a clear collective? 

Alia al-Sabi is a PhD candidate in the department of performance studies at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts.

Fred Moten is a cultural theorist, poet, and professor in the department of performance studies at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme
Basel Abbas was born in Nicosia, Cyprus, in 1983. Ruanne Abou-Rahme was born in Boston in 1983. They have exhibited internationally, most recently at the Art Institute of Chicago (2021); the Centraal Museum, Utrecht, Netherlands (2020); Proyectos Ultravioleta, Guatemala City (2019); and Disjecta, Portland, Oregon (2019). Their work has additionally been featured in solo exhibitions at the Kunstverein Hamburg (2018); Alt Bomontiada, Istanbul (2017); the Office for Contemporary Art, Oslo (2015); the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2014); Akademie der Künste der Welt, Cologne (2014); and the Delfina Foundation, London (2009). In 2015 their work was included in the Sharjah Biennial, where they were awarded the Sharjah Biennial Prize. Abbas and Abou-Rahme live in New York City and Ramallah. 

About Artist Web Projects
The Artist Web Projects series was inaugurated in 1995 and remains the longest-running program of its kind in the United States. Dia commissions artists to create original projects for the internet that explore the aesthetic and conceptual potential of the medium. Dia’s archive of Artist Web Projects is accessible online here.

May amnesia never kiss us on the mouth is co-commissioned by Dia Art Foundation, New York, and the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

May amnesia never kiss us on the mouth is made possible by support from the Khalid Shoman Foundation-Darat al Funun and by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.

Get Dia News

Receive Dia News and be the first to hear about events and exhibitions happening at our locations and sites.