• Events
  • فار EN

Anna Ptak
Amanda Abi Khalil

16 December 2015

Pejman Foundation: Café Musée Project presents a talk by curators Anna Ptak and Amanda Abi Khalil on their recent curatorial work together, "Dust". Ptak and Abi Khalil will present "Dust" and their own practices as curators.

"Dust" is ubiquitous, it is everywhere and is everything, just as in a desert or in the air hovering above the cities. This meaning resonates most powerfully in the Arab and Persian word “غبار” [gho’bār]. The Polish word “kurz” posits a sense of mitigating dust and its constant recreation. The English word “dust,” on the other hand, reflects a small particle on the verge of visibility, a mental bit and a non-material entity. There is something unpleasantly real about it, and at the same time something absolutely essential. The way in which dust behaves in areas as geographically diverse as Beirut, Tehran, Lahore, Kuwait or Warsaw allows us to examine the diverse values of the material. This enabled the curators to present this exhibition in various contexts, for example in Tehran, to include screenings, lectures, artists in resident discussion groups, curators, gallerists. The diversity in the institutional climate of Tehran’s art spaces and the theoretical prerequisites that need to be reassessed when moving from one sociopolitical environment to the other were of the most significant emerging topics during the open discussion.


Anna Ptak (1979, Poland) is a curator and art producer, with a background in cultural anthropology. Since 2008 she has been the curator at A-I-R Laboratory – a residency program at the Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle in Warsaw, Poland. At A-I-R Laboratory she has worked on multiple art productions and long-term interdisciplinary art initiatives involving research on institutional and social conditions of art making, such as Re-tooling Residencies (2010/2011; Ptak is the editor of the reader accompanying the project, Studio Warsaw (2011/12) and currently Re-Directing: East which seeks novel channels of communication between art practices in Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

Amanda Abi Khalil (1985, Beirut) is an independent curator based in Beirut, where she works as the founder and director of Temporary Art Platform, an association for the production and promotion of art practices in public spaces. She studied art mediation, sociology, and anthropology of art, graduating with an MA in Curating Art for Public Spaces from Sorbonne, Paris. Until 2012, she served as the director and curator of The HANGAR, an art space in Beirut where she realized numerous exhibitions of emerging and established international artists. She also teaches art history and sociology of art at the Lebanese Academy of Fine Arts (ALBA) and the Saint Joseph University (USJ) in Beirut.