Visual / Sound / Text    |    CV 

The Ascension | Performance, 2018. Ice, gold leaf, metal pulver. 

This piece was created under the name Fanaa and conceptualized in response to the artist Cassils’ seminal work “Tiresias”, who invited three artists to create works in ice exploring themes of ephemerality, devotion and perseverance. Originally shown as part of a four-channel work “Solution” alongside works by Cassils, Rafa Esparza, and Keijaun Thomas.

The Buraq has been in my mind’s eye since i was a child. She is a controversial figure, part woman, part horse, and part wing. She is not spoken of in the Quran explicitly, but lives strong in folklore and indigenous mythology, sites of resistance to fundamentalism and orthodoxy, sites of richness, imagination and power in counterpoint to austerity and control. I grew up in a home that did not permit iconography, so my choice to become an “artist” has been torn with conflict, both external and internal, and i feel so often paralyzed in my longing to make things. In trying to gild her before she disappears, I think of our very human desire to fix what is divine and unfixable, the simultaneous dreams and limits of alchemy, and the inevitable failure in this attempt is the gesture towards a devotional act, the only kind that makes sense to me.

Performance Concept: Arshia Fatima Haq

Film directed and produced by Cassils

Co-edited by Arshia Fatima Haq and Cassils

DP: Alison Kelly

Sound: Kadet Kuhne