December 14, 2013 – April 27, 2014
The MacKenzie Art Gallery will present the dual projection video installation Soliloquy by world renowned Iranian-American artist Shirin Neshat. The Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, as owners of one of six copies of this video installation, has graciously agreed to loan the video as part of their Momentum Series, which tours key works in their collection to Canadian institutions in response to specific programming needs. The MacKenzie is presenting this work as part of an ongoing series of large-scale video installations which makes available to Regina audiences the work of leading international artists. Neshat’s work will complement the work of Saskatchewan filmmaker and video installation artist Amalie Atkins, on display during the same period.
Born and raised in Iran, Neshat currently lives in the United States. Soliloquy (1999) questions the boundaries of gender, nationality, ethnicity, and culture. In this dual projection, the viewer follows a veiled Neshat as she wanders the streets of a vacant modernist cityscape (filmed in Albany, New York) on one screen. On the other, Neshat navigates the alleys and courtyards of a traditional Eastern cityscape (filmed in Mardin, Turkey). The images on the opposing screens set in motion a meditation on the contrasts between Western and Eastern worlds, contemporary and traditional identities, exilic and Indigenous experiences. The dualities are provisionally reconciled at the end of the video through a blending of choral music and chanted prayer.
Organized and circulated by the Musee d’art Contemporain de Montreal, as part of the momentum series, with the support of the Canadian Heritage Museums Assistance Program.
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Image: Shirin Neshat, Soliloquy, 1999, 5/6 Collection Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, © Shirin Neshat, Photos: Richard-Max Tremblay