Shubbak and Grand Junction present a new workshop series for women from Iraq and Middle Eastern countries to come together to explore perceptions of place and memory through conversation, writing and drawing. The first online workshops were led by Iraqi artist Rand Abdul Jabbar this summer whose work is inspired by her homeland and personal family history.

Taking home as a starting point, participants were asked to select an item of sentimental value that they or family members brought with them to the UK from their country of birth. A postcard, recipe book, piece of clothing, family heirloom or household object; something that holds meaning and cherished memories.

From here the group began to collect and record the associations they have with each object. This took the form of photographs, videos, letters, diary entries or documents in which the object is present or referenced. The group also generated their own recordings that recount lived experiences or inherited memories related to the object.

These workshops were intended to be delivered in person but as a result of Covid-19 they moved online. They are the first of a series which we hope to deliver across community settings throughout 2020 and 2021. To find out more about our Engagement Programme, please get in touch with our Senior Programmer & Festival Producer Taghrid.

Explore reflections and recordings from Rand's workshops.

Rand Abdul Jabbar

Rand Abdul Jabbar is a multi-disciplinary Iraqi artist based in Abu Dhabi.

By engaging with constructed and inherited archives and narratives of modern Iraq, she examines the tension between the tangible and ephemeral within her own personal family history, thereby staking claim to a world beyond her reach. Throughout her creative practice she often borrows from and reconstructs objects from a place, history or memory, employing design, sculpture and installation to realise her ideas. She received a Master of Architecture from Columbia University in 2014.

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