Friday 15th November 2019 Art Breath x MEC

Oxford University



On the 15th November, we held an event with MEC Oxford University: Art in troubled times

At the Middle East Centre Oxford University: Eugene Rogan, Nour Saleh, Venetia Porter and CharlesTripp

The event started with a welcome and introduction to the evening from Eugene Rogan referencing looking to culture to understand Middle East and what culture can bring to us, followed by an introduction from Nour Saleh on why art can resist power, reclaim public spaces, document unwritten histories or current conflicts, succeeded by the event's talks from Venetia Porter and Charles Tripp. 

The talk by Venetia Porter was on Middle Eastern contemporary art, what it means for artists to create in troubled times, going through examples of artists and their art that expresses ideas on politics and the artist's environment. The talk looked at the British Museum ‘s collection and presented Venetia's work that will go into her book that is being prepared, tackling the subject through themes such as: forms of expression, politics, female gaze, faith and asking where is home?
The talk by Charles Tripp was on why art matters in politics and what art can bring to understanding politics and vice versa. He also discussed the importance of studing art for a student of politics.

This was followed on by a panel discussion with Nour Saleh, Venetia Porter and Charles Tripp, chaired by Eugene Rogan on: art in troubled times, why it is important to showcase art, have history of art cover all art, speak to artists, commercial art in relation to political art, art for art’s sake, power relations, reclaiming public spaces and how art and culture evolves with politics. And then the Q&A.