Oraib Toukan
What Then
19 February – 1 May 22

<p>Oraib Toukan, <i>Via Dolorosa</i>, 2021. Image study in a single-channel video (colour, sound). Courtesy the artist<span class="Apple-converted-space"> </span></p>

Oraib Toukan, Via Dolorosa, 2021. Image study in a single-channel video (colour, sound). Courtesy the artist 


KW Institute for Contemporary Art invites artist and scholar Oraib Toukan (b. 1977, USA) to present two new films stemming from her long-standing research on “Cruel Images”. Her research-practice has been committed to exploring the line between looking at and looking away from mediated images of violence.


Using post-production as a medium, Toukan works with photography, film, text, and speech to study the complexity of representing encounters with violence. By pitting images of the tender and the mundane against the horrific in one work, or re-editing discovered & restored archival images of bodies in struggle, she asks: what lies outside the frame of suffering?


The title of the exhibition is borrowed from Jabra Ibrahim Jabra’s verse What Then, What do we do with our Love (1974), and honors the condition of being distant in space, and distant in time, to calamity. Her works depart the much-cited dichotomy of outcry and indifference back to the function of looking. Toukan proposes instead more relational readings—from other situatedness’ of observing violence.


Co-curators: Krist Gruijthuijsen and Léon Kruijswijk