From Ear to Ear to Eye

Jumana Manna, A magical substance flows into me, 2015. Still. Co-commissioned by the Sharjah Art Foundation and Chisenhale Gallery with Malmö Konsthall and the Biennale of Sydney. Courtesy of the artist and CRG Gallery (New York).
Ziad Antar, from the series Intensive Beirut II, 2017, giclee print, courtesy of Selma Feriani Gallery
  • Jumana Manna, A magical substance flows into me, 2015. Still. Co-commissioned by the Sharjah Art Foundation and Chisenhale Gallery with Malmö Konsthall and the Biennale of Sydney. Courtesy of the artist and CRG Gallery (New York).
  • Ziad Antar, from the series Intensive Beirut II, 2017, giclee print, courtesy of Selma Feriani Gallery

From Ear to Ear to Eye is an exhibition that explores sound, music and listening in myriad forms. It traces the acoustic lives of different cities and places across the Arab world, bringing together almost 20 artists and researchers working in the region and elsewhere. Comprising installation, sculpture, photography, video and sound, the exhibition considers how recording and translation can map memories and migration, territories and conflicts. With a title borrowed from a text by the artist Anna Boghiguian, the exhibition assembles graphic scores and field recordings, poetry and acoustic analysis, alongside much else.

Many of the artists in From Ear to Ear to Eye are also musicians, run record labels or are engaged with research into the connections between politics and sound. The exhibition presents a wide range of perspectives on complex questions of harmony and violence, traversing very different cities, practices and experiences. It moves from folk music at the dawn of modern Turkey to radio broadcasts in Palestine, from a bird’s-eye view of the Egyptian Revolution’s aftermath to the shifting urban fabric of present-day Beirut.

The Arab world is often relayed to us via images of catastrophe, such as the refugee crisis, civil war, terrorism and humanitarian disaster. From Ear to Ear to Eye is about what might not be possible to comprehend through images alone. Sound and music emerge as tools of power and resistance, as ways to silence as well as to give voice. The exhibition is an argument for the importance of listening, as much as looking.

Haig Aivazian, Hastayim Yasiyorum (I Am Sick But I Am Alive), 2016. Courtesy the artist and Sfeir-Selmer Gallery, Beirut/Hamburg. Installation shot, From Ear to Ear to Eye, Nottingham Contemporary, Dec 2017- Mar 2018. Photo Stuart Whipps.
Joe Namy, Red Filled the Intervals… Between the Musical Notes, 2017/2017. Courtesy of the artist. Installation shot, From Ear to Ear to Eye, Nottingham Contemporary, Dec 2017- Mar 2018. Photo Stuart Whipps.
Basma Alsharif, The Story of Milk and Honey, 2011. Courtesy the artist and Galerie Imane Fares. Installation shot, From Ear to Ear to Eye, Nottingham Contemporary, Dec 2017- Mar 2018. Photo Stuart Whipps
Lawrence Abu Hamden, Earshot, 2016. Courtesy Maureen Paley, London. Installation shot, From Ear to Ear to Eye, Nottingham Contemporary, Dec 2017- Mar 2018. Photo Stuart Whipps.
Ania Dabrowska, A Lebanese Archive (with the collection of Diab Alkarssifi c.1890-1992), 2013-ongoing. Courtesy of the artist. Installation shot, From Ear to Ear to Eye, Nottingham Contemporary, Dec 2017- Mar 2018. Photo Stuart Whipps.

Supported by: