Washington Project for the Arts Presents Morehshin Allahyari Aisha Qandisha: She Who Sees The Unknown

By Editorial Team on February 10, 2020
Courtesy of Washington Project for the Arts.
Opening: Thursday, February 13 from 7:30pm to 9pm

On Monstrosity and Re-figuration: a reading and lecture by Morehshin Allahyari: Thursday, February 27, 8:00-9:30pm

Join Washington Project for the Arts for the exhibition of Aisha Qandisha, a 3D animated video from the series She Who Sees The Unknown by the Brooklyn-based artist Morehshin Allahyari.

Morehshin Allahyari is an artist, activist, writer, and educator who was born and raised in Iran and who moved to the United States in 2007. Her work deals with the political, social, and cultural contradictions we face every day. In She Who Sees The Unknown, Allahyari uses 3D modeling, 3D scanning, 3D printing, and storytelling to re-create monstrous female/queer figures of Middle Eastern origin. She mines the traditions and myths associated with these supernatural creatures to explore the catastrophes of colonialism, patriarchy, and environmental degradation, “re-figuring” the past to activate and preserve what may have been forgotten or misrepresented.

This project is organized by DC digital artist Jonathan Monaghan, furthering his practice and providing DC with the opportunity to engage with the ideas that Allahyari brings forth. Monaghan writes about the project, “Technology and conceptions of the future are inherently intertwined and artists who embrace computer graphics in their practice are often concerned with the issues of a technology-driven future. Artists like Allahyari sense that if we are to build a better path forward, we must first rectify the past. By excavating forgotten or ignored histories, Allahyari tells a more robust narrative of the human story, one unbeholden to traditional perspectives tainted by colonialism or masculinity.”

About the Artist
Morehshin Allahyari is a media artist, activist, educator, and curator. She has earned wide acclaim for her series Material Speculation: ISIS, which explores 3D printing as a tool for cultural preservation and activism. The numerous exhibitions, festivals, and workshops presenting her work and scholarship include MARTa Herford (Germany), Centre Pompidou (France), Transmediale (Germany), Museum of Contemporary Art in Montreal, Pori Museum (Finland), Dallas Museum of Art and many others.

About the Artist-Curator
Jonathan Monaghan is an artist working across a range of media, including prints, sculpture, and computer animated video, to produce otherworldly objects and narratives. Drawing on wide-ranging sources, such as ancient mythologies and science fiction, his highly-crafted and fantastical works uncover subconscious anxieties associated with technology and consumerism. Past exhibitions and screenings of his work include The Sundance Film Festival, The Hermitage Museum, The Frist Art Museum, and The Palais de Tokyo. His work has been featured in several media outlets including Elephant Magazine, VICE, The Wall Street Journal, and The Village Voice.

Washington Project for the Arts is located at 2124 8th Street NW.