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Large photo, video, and person seated behind screen in dark room
Dawoud, Ya Yonathai
Six minute performative video, 2021
abstract black and orange composition
You Want It Darker
Silkscreen on velvet, latex rubber, fabric, 25x37", 2020
Interior of gallery
Branding Conflict
Gallery 204, Vanderbilt University, 2022
Row of tiled green images on gallery wall
Odd billboard on Post and 52
54 Framed prints, 5x7” each presents a repeated image of a billboard the artist advertised for a few weeks in New Palestine, Indiana. Installation view, Glassell School of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 2020
image of billboard reading "Notice, on the top picture of the name of the town was once Palestine" with text above that reads "It's certainly puzzling and odd without context, but I do love a good puzzle."
Odd billboard on Post and 52
5x7”, 2020
Gallery with drawings and projection
One Day After 1948
Ink on newspaper, Jeune Création, Paris, 2016
Gallery with purple video and photo on ground on platform
if you Like you can show my works in galleries
Inkjet print on canvas and video, Glassell School of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston 2020
tan and yellow fabric
Parade Float
Collaboration w/ Amanda Assaley, Trailer; Dearborn sold praying carpets; party city products of Arab noses; fabric; torn western carpet; cut Shriners fezzes and other materials, 2019
Gallery interior with Parade Float and large screen structure
Costume Party at the Moslem Temple
Michigan State University Union Art Gallery, 2019
Tiled plinth and floor
Copies of a memoir, letter, key, sound, and tiles, International Academy of Art Palestine 2016

Qais Assali is an interdisciplinary artist/designer born in Palestine in 1987 and raised in the UAE before returning to Palestine in 2000. Assali uses visual analogy, translation, substitution, and appropriation strategies to rethink forms of communication architectures. Assali taught in Visual Communication in several art schools in Palestine and the US. Currently, Assali is a Professor of the Practice in the field of Graphic Arts at School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts in Boston. Assali was a 2019-21 Core Fellow at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX.

Assali’s work has been exhibited at Hauser & Wirth, NY (2021); Middle East Institute, DC (2021); Station Museum of Contemporary Art, TX (2021); Stamps Gallery, University of Michigan, MI (2021); Toronto Queer Film Festival, Canada (2021); SculptureCenter, NY (2020); Chicago Cultural Center, IL (2020), Glassell School of Arts, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, TX (2020); Temporary Art Center (TAC), Netherlands (2019); and Qalandiya International, Palestine (2018). Assali is the recipient of 2021 Art Matters Foundation grant; 2020 Chicago Artists Coalition Spark Grant; 2020 Houston Arts Alliance Digital Grant; 2020 Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts - Idea Fund; 2016 SAIC New Artists’ Society Award; and 2016 Palest’In & Out Festival - Plastic Art Prize.

Assali holds four degrees in visual arts from Palestine and the US, a BFA in Graphic Design from An-Najah National University 2009, and a BA in Contemporary Visual Art from the International Academy of Art Palestine 2017. Assali simultaneously completed an MFA from Bard College, NY 2019, and an MA in Art Education from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, IL 2018

Artist statement

I design, translate, walk, layout, tile, pile, pattern, image, repeat, abstract, hide, copy, deconstruct, construct, reconstruct, and overlap. I solve problems. I make problems, I out, I witness, I recognize, I decentralize, teach, I lecture, I advertise, I commercialize. I import educational dynamics to art and society through design and education. As a Palestinian artist/designer, I commercialize, politicize, and displace causes, ideologies, sites, jokes, names, relationships, barriers, or subject positions based on unsmart practical geopolitical conceptualism and design.

My art/design practice, which includes photography, video, installation, performance, graphic arts, and in the archives, engages issues of time and memory, collective trauma, and diasporic doubling through investigations of historical events, the deconstruction of my role as author, and my own subject position.

I seek to complicate historical hierarchies. I am the result of my generation, experiencing the entire Second Intifada and trying to frame or shape it differently. These historical narratives fuel my passionate gaze toward the Middle East by subverting notions of oppression and victimhood. My work shows how the case of Palestine is more broadly connected to the problems of the Arab world and the whole world and to see the historic Palestinian relationship to colonization and imperialism

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