2016 Shortlist

Sophia Al Maria

Image of The Future was Desert Part 1 by Sophia al Maria

Sophia Al Maria is an artist, writer and filmmaker. She studied comparative literature at the American University in Cairo, and aural and visual cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London. For the past few years, she has been carrying out research around the concept of Gulf Futurism.

Her primary interests are around the isolation of individuals via technology and reactionary Islam, the corrosive elements of consumerism and industry, and the erasure of history and the blinding approach of a future no one is ready for. In 2007, she published her first autobiographical novel, 'The Girl Who Fell to Earth' (Harper Collins Perennial).

Al Maria's work has recently been exhibited in various institutional shows around the world, including Villa Empain, Boghossian Foundation, Brussels, (2016); HOME, Manchester (2016); The Brunei Gallery, London (2016); LUMA Westbau, Zurich and the 2015 Triennial: Surround Audience, New Museum, New York. Al Maria has an upcoming solo show at the Whitney Museum, New York.

Interview with Sophia Al Maria

Excerpt from The Future was Desert Part II (2016)

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