Rana Hamadeh, The Big Board or ‘And Before It Falls It Is Only Reasonable To Enjoy Life A Little’, 2013. Performance and stage set with various objects, 118 × 59 × 27 1/2 in (300 × 150 × 70 cm).
Left: “Here and Elsewhere,” 2014. Exhibition view: New Museum. Photo: Benoit Pailley
Right: Performance: 12th Lyon Biennial, France. © Blaise Adilon
As part of “Here and Elsewhere,” the New Museum presents Rana Hamadeh’s The Big Board or ‘And Before It Falls, It Is Only Reasonable to Enjoy Life a Little’ (2013), a sculptural cartography or “stage set” activated through Hamadeh’s related performance lecture. The Big Board is a part of Hamadeh’s long-term research project “Alien Encounters,” which considers foreignness and strangeness by looking at the figure of the social outcast, the immigrant, and the extraterrestrial. Reminiscent of a war-room map unfurled on a large table, The Big Board charts connections between the techniques and terms shared by the domains of law and hygiene as represented through archival materials and artifacts. In her performance, Hamadeh dramatizes her evolving treatise on The Big Board‘s themes and subjects to propose a lyrical and constellated method of thinking through established histories and speculative futures.