Shubbak in Dalston

A collaboration with Selma & Sofiane Ouissi

7–9 July 2017

On Location ·

Raeda Saadeh-The wishes tree ©Med Nessim Toumi

Raeda Saadeh-The wishes tree ©Med Nessim Toumi


Fri 7 – Sun 9 July 2017, times vary
Various locations throughout Dalston
Free events, no booking required


Download Map and full details here

As part of its 2017 collaboration with two influential festivals in the Arab region to imagine new responses to local contexts, Shubbak has invited dancers and choreographers Selma and Sofiane Ouissi (founders of Dream City) to commission a series of interventions for Dalston. The works explore a neighbourhood facing rapid economic development alongside fragile existences and hidden histories.

Dream City in Tunis is a biennial of artistic interventions exploring the politics of public space. Created through research periods and residencies, invited artists create new site-specific works, responding to the architectural, socio-economic, political and historical context of Tunis and its communities.

The full walking tour takes about an hour excluding stops. Make a day of it in Dalston – why not check out And Here I Am at The Arcola or our events at Rich Mix and the Barbican?

A Memory of an Impossible Future

Laila Soliman & Ruud Gielens

12pm–7pm, the Bunker, Bootstrap
The Bootyard, 3 Abbot St, London E8 3DL

Laila Soliman (Egypt) and Ruud Gielens (Belgium) explore the history of activism and radical civic resistance in Dalston. Gathering personal narratives through video interviews and archival research, the artists will create a performance and installation for one of Dalston’s most hidden spaces. Unearthing stories of protests and radical politics, the work will attempt to assemble the advice of seasoned Dalston activists for their younger counterparts.

Installation opening times: 7-9 July 2017: 12-7pm (Performative Interventions: 4-7 pm)

Concept & Video by: Laila Soliman & Ruud Gielens

In collaboration with: Jules Leaño

Sculptures by: Souheil Sleiman

Interventions by: Ayesha Usmani | John Rowley | Souheil Sleiman

The artists would like to express their gratitude to all the people whose faces you will see and whose voices you will hear.

Laila Soliman is an independent theatre director, dramaturge and playwright. Ruud Gielens’ versatile practice spans across various fields of the performing arts. They have collaborated since 2011 on a variety of politically motivated artistic projects.


Malek Gnaoui

12pm–7pm, St Barnabas Church
20 Shacklewell Row, London E8 2EA

Tunisian artist Malek Gnaoui delves into the history of boxing in Dalston. Fascinated by the historic popularity of this sport and its links to both religion and corruption, he creates a new visual and sound installation. Sculptural punchbags occupy a church hall emitting voices from local boxers – a sombre display of ambition, fate and fighting for one’s place in life.

Trained as a ceramist, Malek Gnaoui’s interdisciplinary art practice explores aspects of spirituality in popular imagery and custom.

Dead Meat Moving

Malek Gnaoui

12pm–7pm, container yard
Ridley Road Market, London E8 2NP
24 mins (loop)

In this powerful video, artist Malek Gnaoui takes us on a dark journey into a socio-political system stripped to the bone, where a dismantled society and sheep, condemned to the slaughter, are stripped of any hope. Filmed in one of Tunis’s largest abattoirs for Dream City 2015, this work is now shown close to the meat stalls of Dalston’s marketplace.


Fakhri El Ghezal

12pm–6pm, Vortex Jazz Club
11 Gillett Square, London N16 8AZ
6 mins (loop)

In this three-screen video installation, Tunisian artist Fakhri El Ghezal takes interest in the world of manual labour and the working class, leading us into their universe by following a ‘halkoum’, or water pipe. The pipe emerges, snakes and duplicates, while agitated workers pause for a moment of respite.
Fakhri El Ghezal works essentially in photography and video. His practice evidences the workings of Tunisian society and the world of labour.

Shubbak in Dalston is presented with additional support from the Paul Hamyln Foundation, British Council and Al Mawred Al Thaqafy.