September 9 – October 8, 2021

Umber Majeed

In the Name of Hypersurface of the Present, 2018

Single channel animation, 10’22”, Full HD, stereo. Courtesy of the artist and P.A Waheed Archives. Editing took place through the Cuts and Burns Residency Program at Outpost Artist Resources. This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Created with additional support from Akademie Schloss Solitude and ZKM, Germany

Selected by Tiago de Abreu Pinto

 

Chapter 8

First time we spoke we talked about cultural displacement and about your journey living in multiple places throughout your life. An inconsistent noise of multiple stories that were being told were resonating around that cafeteria. I noticed how some people could bring up subjects and whole stories up with a few words. People were fast with their hands and pace. We stayed there for a while, talking. You told me about your understanding of ideas of a future for the South Asian diaspora. We drank coffee while you were showing me how to make a critique through humour, archival material and collage. And sipping some of my coffee I’ve seen these animations and performances until the moment you showed me a project that – at that time – accumulated all your interests: with the use of family archives, from your grandfather, who was part of the Muslim League, the political party that founded Pakistan. You mentioned a residency you did in Lebanon where you had time to investigate a particular part of history that involves Pakistan with Nuclear energy and how your family ties to this involvement. How do we even frame this history? Where is this moment of the blast? Either the real one (the five simultaneous underground nuclear tests named Chagai-I in 98) or the symbolic ones (with the corruptions, with the destruction of monuments that commemorate the nuclear tests or through the pictures of blooming flora that your grandfather took at that time). I remember we nodded in silence when you told me that your grandfather gave one of his pictures, a flower blooming, to one of the governmental personnel that attended the atomic test. So, that’s why I reached you, because I couldn’t forget that moment.