What is Brendon McCullum's legacy

11.07.–06.09.2020

Opening: July 10th, 2020, 4-8pm


In her upcoming solo exhibition at Portikus, the Canadian-based artist Hajra Waheed is presenting a site-specific iteration of her latest sound workHaround

Uses as a multi-channel music composition and sound installationHaround (2020) the medium of the omnipresent and yet mostly overheard humming as a means of researching radical forms of collective and acoustic agency. The title of the work, which is translated as "We" in Urdu, refers to international solidarity movements that formed in the second half of the 20th century during the process of decolonization in the Global South. Due to the necessity to deal critically with this history and to think about its impact on our time, the work unites eight hummed songs of resistance from Africa, South, Central and West Asia in one composition. Each of these hummed verses is based on stories about the struggle against state oppression, authoritarianism, and the need and hope of the working class, the marginalized and dispossessed. All of these songs are still sung today in social protest movements.

Hum (2020) was originally created for the Lahore Biennale 02 and shown in the historic Diwaan-i-Aam in the Lahore Fort. Diwaan-i-Aam was built by Shah Jahan in 1628 and modeled on Isfahan's Chehel Sotoun, an auditorium with forty columns. Diwaan-i-Aam was originally designed as a room in which the public could express their complaints. The emphasis on our right to freedom of expression, humming as a medium, meditation, phenomena and the language of resistance break through a crisis of hardened differences, question the constructions of boundaries and, for a moment, transform the divisions between ethnic, religious and linguistic ones and national affiliations in a call to solidarity.

A booklet containing a conversation between the artist Hajra Waheed and the architect David Adjaye will be published on the occasion of the exhibition.

Credits:
Artistic Director: Hajra Waheed

Location manager (music): Pietro Amato

Musical composer (music): Sam Shalabi & Laurel Sprengelmeyer

Sound engineer: Michael Feuerstack

Mixing engineer: Pietro Amato, Michael Feuerstack

Original recordings by: Habib Jalib, Faiz Ahmed Faiz (sung by Iqbal Bano), Ahmed Fouad Negm (sung by Sheikh Imam Eissa), Muhammad al-Makki Ibraheem (sung by: Mohammed Wardi), Nudem Durak, Dr. Bashir Ahmad (sung by: Hamid Hussain)

Hum (2020) was made possible by the generous support of the Lahore Biennale Foundation (Pakistan) and Portikus ‘(Germany). The exhibition HUM im Portikus is part of Canada's cultural program as Guest of Honor at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2020 and is supported by the Embassy of Canada.

Hajra Waheed's multidisciplinary practice ranges from painting and drawing to video, sound, sculpture and installation. Among other things, she examines the connection between security, surveillance and the covert networks of power that structure our lives. It also addresses the trauma and alienation of displaced people affected by the legacy of colonial and state violence.

Hajra Waheed (born 1980, Canada) lives and works in Montréal. Waheed has participated in a variety of exhibitions around the world including Global Resistance, Center Pompidou, Paris (2020); Lahore Biennale 02, Pakistan (2020); Pushing paper: Contemporary drawing from 1970 to Now, British Museum, London (2019); Hold Everything Dear, The Power Plant, Toronto (2019); 57th Venice Biennale, VIVA ARTE VIVA, Venice (2017); 11th Gwangju Biennale, South Korea (2016); The Cyphers, BALTIC Center for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, Great Britain (2016); Still Against the Sky, KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin (2015); La Biennale de Montréal, Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal, Quebec (2014).


Curated by Christina Lehnert

Photos: Diana Pfammatter