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IN THE HEART
OF ANOTHER COUNTRY

THE DIASPORIC IMAGINATION IN THE SHARJAH ART FOUNDATION COLLECTION
#INTHEHEARTOFANOTHERCOUNTRY

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Hall for Contemporary Art 28 October 2022 — 12 March 2023

My absence has been an exile from an exile.
Etel Adnan, In the Heart of the Heart of Another Country

In the Heart of Another Country explores the concept of home—of longing and belonging by artists who hail from multiple diasporas. The exhibition explores the ways that physical movement—how mobility across geographies, has shaped and contoured the frame of global art today. The artists, herein, have traversed migratory routes from South and West Asia, through Africa, and the Caribbean. Many now live in dispersed sites, far from where they first believed that they belonged.

Drawing on art from the international collection of Sharjah Art Foundation, UAE, In the Heart of Another Country showcases the work of more than 60 artists through over 140 artworks in all media, many of which have rarely, if ever, been seen outside of their original context. Recently restored installations are presented alongside contemporary acquisitions, which narrate a communal story of kinship amongst artists—one often developed against a backdrop of political turmoil and social unrest.

In the Heart of Another Country embodies the Sharjah Art Foundation Collection’s goal to present art that posits East-East and South-South alliances, forging a meeting point—a connective tissue that nurtures a polyphonous and inclusive art history.

In the Heart of Another Country
is organised by Deichtorhallen Hamburg and Sharjah Art Foundation, UAE.
The exhibition is curated by Dr Omar Kholeif, Director of Collections and Senior Curator, Sharjah Art Foundation, UAE.

About Sharjah Art Foundation Collection
The Sharjah Art Foundation Collection’s roots were seeded with acquisitions and commissions from the Sharjah Biennial and Foundation. It has since grown to be one of the Middle East’s pre-eminent collections, serving to enrich the lives of audiences through the acquisition and rotating exhibition of significant works of modern and contemporary art, both locally and inter- nationally. The more than 1,300 works span art movements from the 1920s to the present day in an ever-expanding range of visual culture and forms. Reflecting Sharjah’s history as a major regional trade route, the collection acts as a node that connects cultures through modern and contemporary art. The collection proposes a re-authoring of the history of art, contextualising it from a South/South and East/East perspective while offering an alternative view that shifts the axis of this history to a more inclusive, intergenerational, and transcultural one.

About Sharjah Art Foundation
Sharjah Art Foundation is an advocate, catalyst, and producer of contemporary art within the Emirate of Sharjah and the surrounding region, in dialogue with the international arts community. Under the leadership of founder Hoor Al Qasimi, a curator and artist, the foundation advances an experimental and wide-ranging programmatic model that supports the production and presentation of contemporary art, preserves, and celebrates the distinct culture of the region and encourages a shared understanding of the transformational role of art. The foundation’s core initiatives include the long-running Sharjah Biennial, featuring contemporary artists from around the world; the annual March Meeting, a convening of international arts professionals and artists; grants and residencies for artists, curators, and cultural producers; ambitious and experimental commissions and a range of travelling exhibitions and scholarly publications.

Established in 2009 to expand programmes beyond the Sharjah Biennial, which launched in 1993, the foundation is a critical resource for artists and cultural organizations in the Gulf and a conduit for local, regional, and international developments in contemporary art. The foundation’s deep assurance to developing and sustaining the cultural life and heritage of Sharjah is reflected through year- round exhibitions, performances, screenings, and educational programmes in the city of Sharjah and across the Emirate, often hosted in historic buildings that have been repurposed as cultural and community centres. A growing collection reflects the foundation’s support of contemporary artists in the realization of new work and its recognition of the contributions made by pioneering modern artists from the region and around the world.

Sharjah Art Foundation is a legally independent public body established by Emiri Decree and supported by government funding, grants from national and international non-profits and cultural organizations, corporate sponsors, and individual patrons. All its exhibitions are free and open to the public.

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