IJIA Dialogues 2021 Webinar: “On Ruins: The Contemporary Politics of Heritage Preservation and Reconstruction”

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IJIA Dialogues 2021 Webinar: “On Ruins: The Contemporary Politics of Heritage Preservation and Reconstruction”

Join the International Journal of Islamic Architecture (IJIA) for its IJIA Dialogues series, an annual webinar conversation that brings together scholars and practitioners from across varied disciplines for a discussion of critical contemporary issues that interrogate the boundaries between architecture, art, anthropology, archaeology, and history. In the inaugural session, “On Ruins: The Contemporary Politics of Heritage Preservation and Reconstruction,” series host, Hala Auji (Beirut), is joined by video artists and filmmakers Ali Cherri (Beirut/Paris) and Panos Aprahamian (Beirut) for a virtual discussion (via Zoom) on the intersections between video art, film, and architectural preservation in relation to the socio-political constructs of heritage in Syria, Palestine, Iraq, the Gulf, and Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh).

Date and Time: Wednesday, January 27, 2021, 6:00-7:30 pm (Beirut)

Register in advance for this session:


After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the session. A recording of the event will be posted on the IJIA website and Facebook page. The discussion will also appear in print as part of the journal’s new “Dialogues” section.



Ali Cherri is a video and visual artist based in Beirut and Paris. He works with drawing, film, installation, performance, print, and video, tracing correspondences between political and geological disasters in his native Lebanon and neighboring territories. Cherri has exhibited and screened work at numerous international venues such as the Jameel Arts Center (Dubai), Galleria d’Arte Moderna (Milan), the Guggenheim (New York), the Museum of Modern Art (New York), Jeu de Paume (Paris), the Tate Modern (London), and the Moscow Museum of Modern Art (Russia), among many others. He is the recipient of Harvard University’s Robert E. Fulton Fellowship, and the Rockefeller Foundation Award, and was shortlisted for The Abraaj Group Art Prize. His films have been shown at and awarded prizes from several international festivals, such as the Copenhagen International Documentary Festival (winner of New Vision Award), the Dubai International Film Festival (winner Best Director), Videobrasil (Southern Panorama Award), Berlinale, the Toronto International Film Festival, and the San Francisco International Film Festival, amongst others.

Panos Aprahamian is a writer, video artist, and filmmaker based in Beirut. His practice explores ethnographic fictions, temporal disjunctions, nonhuman agency, lost futures, and live-action role-play. He is an Arab Fund for Arts and Culture and Doha Film Institute, grantee and his work has been supported by Ashkal Alwan, Middle East Media Initiative, Art Dubai, Beirut Art Center, and The Goethe Institut. He studied at the University of the Arts London as a Caspian Arts Scholar and at The Lebanese Academy of Fine Arts. He is currently an instructor in Fine Arts and Media Studies at the American University of Beirut.

Hala Auji is a writer and art historian living in Beirut. She’s an assistant professor at the American University of Beirut where she teaches courses on the art, architecture, and material culture of the Middle East and the historical Islamic world. Her work focuses on the visual dimensions of modernity in the eastern Mediterranean, including print culture, book history, museum practices, and portraiture. She’s the author of Printing Arab Modernity: Book Culture and the American Press in Nineteenth-Century Beirut (Brill, 2016), among other publications. She is currently an Assistant Editor with the International Journal of Islamic Architecture.