World Picks from the Editors, Oct 13 — Oct 27, 2023

12 October, 2023

La La Lil Jidar: 20 Years Behind the Apartheid Wall in Palestine Exhibition

Ongoing — Nov. 11,  Philadelphia more info

La La Lil Jidar: 20 Years Behind the Apartheid Wall in Palestine, features the powerful photography of Dr. Aisha Mershani, who returned to the Occupied West Bank in summer 2022, finding countless people that she photographed in 2004/2005. The result shows a timeline of the “then and now” behind the Wall through these individual stories.

“My photography focuses on visually exposing the realities on the ground in Palestine, reframing the source of violence. This body of work spans nearly 20 years as a collection of photographs highlighting the ongoing violence of Israeli colonial expansion by way of the Apartheid Wall … For me, it is vital to view Palestine/Israel beyond US mainstream news framing, but through the people directly affected by the violence of the Wall.”

Additional events taking place alongside the exhibition include a Human Rights Coalition Premiere Documentary Film on Toxic Prisons Campaign: (October 17) and a music performance by oudist Dr. Huda Asfour (Oct 21).

Dubai Calligraphy Biennale: Strokes of Global Creativity

Ongoing — Oct 30, Dubai more info

The inaugural edition of Dubai Calligraphy Biennale (DCB) aims to promote creative cultural dialogues, keep calligraphic artwork at the forefront of Arab world output and provide a platform for the best of the discipline showcasing 19 exhibitions across 35+ locations in Dubai art from a variety of languages and cultures. Taking place as part of the Biennale is the 11th edition of the Dubai International Arabic Calligraphy Exhibition, which is showcasing over 75 artistic pieces crafted by approximately 50 calligraphers from 17 nationalities and organised by Dubai Culture in collaboration with Dubai Collection, Art Dubai, and Etihad Museum, the exhibition’s venue.

Frankfurt Book Fair

Oct 18 — Oct 21, 2023, Frankfurt more info

The world’s largest book fair returns in a hybrid format, allowing participants from different parts of the world to connect and enjoy a unique exhibition experience. Pavilions include the latest products and licensing services, book reviews and premieres, informative seminars and other exciting activities, including THE ART+ marketplace. The international trading platform for trading rights and licenses in the publishing industry will feature Slovenia as the Guest of Honour.

Mizna+RAWIFest 2023

Oct 26 — Oct 28, Minneapolis & online more info

This fully hybrid biannual conference will kick off with a keynote address from novelist and poet Hala Alyan, whose novel  Salt Houses won the Dayton Literary Peace Prize and the Arab American Book Award and was a finalist for the Chautauqua Prize. Her latest novel,  The Arsonists’ City, was published in 2021 and was a finalist for the 2022 Aspen Words Literary Prize. She is also the author of four award-winning collections of poetry, most recently The Twenty-Ninth Year.


Dounia and the Princess of Aleppo Film Screening

Oct 28 — London more info

The Barbican is partnering with SAFAR Film Festival to present this beautiful animation, in Arabic with English subtitles, that champions hope and understanding written by Marya Zarif and co-directed with André Hanif. Six-year-old Dounia is forced to leave her home in Aleppo, accompanied by her grandfather and grandmother and the kind of magic that has its roots in the fabulous stories her parents told her. Together they undertake a perilous journey to find the new home which, Dounia is sure, is waiting for them somewhere.

The City and the Writer: curated by Nathalie Handal

Nov 1 — Abu Dhabi more info

Words Without Borders celebration of multicultural, multilingual authors reading their works.

A diverse line-up of award-winning writers come together to celebrate and share their writing. The evening is inspired by the column “The City and the Writer” for Words Without Borders magazine, celebrating its 20th anniversary. The column takes readers on journeys—ruminations on urban life and the imagination, literature and language, translation and transitions.

This global gathering, curated by NYU Abu Dhabi’s Nathalie Handal (USA-France-Palestine) includes award-winning poet and curator of “The City and the Writer,” stars Alain Mabanckou (Congo-France-USA) Grand prix littéraire d’Afrique noire, Naomi Shihab Nye (Palestinian-American) Young People’s Poet Laureate, Giancarlo de Cataldo (Italy) Award-winning screenwriter, Aminatta Forna (Sierra Leone-Scotland) Windham Campbell Prize winner, David Henry Hwang (American) Tony Award winner, Geetanjali Shree (India) Booker Prize winner, Isabella Hammad (Britain-Palestine) Granta Best of Young British Novelists, Fernanda Trías (Uruguay) Award-winning novelist, Maryam Madjidi (France) Prix Goncourt du Premier Roman, Shahad Al-Rawi (Iraq) Edinburgh Prize for First Fiction, Wole Soyinka (Nigeria) Nobel Prize winner, Rachel Holmes (United Kingdom), Award winning biographer, with Sam Nester (Australia-USA) on the trumpet.


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