Lawrence Abu Hamdan
CONTRA DICTION ( Speech against itself ) | 2015
Two channel video installation, teleprompter, screen, speaker. Variable dimensions. Ed. 3/3 + 2 AP.
In this work Abu Hamdan seeks to explore the ways in which our right to silence can be preserved in today’s All-Hearing and All-Speaking society. In his reappraisal of silence and its politics Abu Hamdan will look into the linguistics of Taqiyya, an old piece of islamic jurisprudence practiced only by esoteric minorities that allows a believing individual to deny his faith or commit otherwise illegal acts while they are at risk of persecution or in a condition of statelessness. By looking into stories of alleged mass conversions of the Druze minority in northern Syria Abu Hamdan indicates how such minor speech acts can help us re-appraise the precision of speaking, the multiple ways of remaining silent and the inherently unfaithful nature of ones voice.
This work was made with the creative production and video direction of Nesrine Khodr and exists both as a live audio essay and as a 2 channel video installation.
Biography of the artist
Born in Amman, Jordan. 1985
Works and Lives in Beirut, Lebanon
Lawrence Abu Hamdan is an artist and audio investigator. His interest with sound and its intersection with politics originate from his background as a touring musician and facilitator of DIY music. The artists audio investigations has been used as evidence at the UK Asylum and Immigration Tribunal and as advocacy for organisations such as Amnesty International and Defence for Children International. The artist’s forensic audio investigations are conducted as part of his research for Forensic Architecture at Goldsmiths College London where he received his PhD in 2017.
Abu Hamdan’s Rubber Coated Steel 2016 won the short film award at the Rotterdam International Film festival 2017 and his exhibition Earshot at Portikus Frankfurt (2016) was the recipient of the 2016 Nam June Paik Award. Other solo exhibitions include Hammer Museum L.A (2018), Kunsthalle St Gallen (2015), Beirut in Cairo (2013), The Showroom, London (2012), Casco, Utrecht (2012). Abu Hamdan is the author of the artist book [inaudible] : A politics of listening in 4 acts and a forthcoming ebook produced as part of his 2015-17 fellowship at the Vera List Centre for Art and Politics at the New School in New York. His works are part of collections at MoMA New York, Guggenheim New York, Van AbbeMuseum Eindhoven, Centre Pompidou Paris, Tate Modern.
To view all the texts related to this artist in the section archive of texts click here