Don’t Miss – New York: Emily Jacir’s ‘dispatch’ at Alexander and Bonin through November 28, 2009

November 23rd, 2009

stazione (Rialto Mercato), Emily Jacir (2008) via Alexander and Bonin

Emily Jacir: Dispatch is the artist’s second solo exhibition shown at Alexander and Bonin Gallery in New York City. The exhibition runs through November 28 and features works from two of Jacir’s most recent projects, Lydda Airport – a short film that takes place at the eponymous location sometime in the mid to late 1930’s. Also to be featured at photographs and the brochure of Jacir’s stazione, which was conceived for the 53rd Venice Biennale, 2009 but never realized due to its unexpected cancellation by Venetian municipal authorities without explanation.

More images, text and related links after the jump…..

Still from Lydda Airport, Emily Jacir (2007-2009)  via Alexander and Bonin

In a recent interview with the New York Times, she refused to to answer a question about where she was born. While her place of birth is uncertain, in her work Jacir often address the circumstances the community from which she has descended – Palestine. The two projects in this show are no exception.

stazione, Emily Jacir (2008) exhibition view via Leaves Of Glass

Lydda Airport, now named Ben Gurion Airport, is the largest and busiest international airport in Isreal and was originally built by the British Mandate of Palestine chiefly for military purposes in 1936. Central to the short film’s narrative is Hannibal, one of eight planes which made up the Handley Page fleet, the largest passenger planes in the world at that time. Hannibal mysteriously disappeared in 1940 somewhere over the Gulf of Oman en route to Sharjah.

Lydda Airport, Emily Jacir (2007-2009) via Alexander and Bonin

The film was also inspired by Edmond Tamari, a transport company employee from Jaffa, who received a communication that he should take a bouquet of flowers to Lydda Airport and wait for the arrival of Amelia Earhart in order to welcome her to Palestine. She never arrived.

Representing the Palestinian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2009, stazione, was to have been situated on each of the 24 vaporetti stops along route #1 of the water bus route in Venice which ferrys audiences from one Biennale exhibition to another. Jacir translated the names of each station into Arabic and planned to place the Arabic translations on all the stops next to their Italian counterparts thereby creating a bilingual transportation route through the city. The Arabic inscriptions were meant to place each floating platform in direct dialogue with the surrounding architecture and urban design, thereby linking them with various elements of Venice’s shared heritage with the Arab world.

Still from Lydda Airport, Emily Jacir (2007-2009) via Alexander and Bonin

Related links:
Alexander and Bonin Hompage
Dispatch by Emily Jacir [Leaves of Glass]
Art in Review, Emily Jacir: Dispatch[NY Times]