Zeina Barakeh(5th Hall)

Zeina Barakeh (b. Beirut) is a Palestinian-Lebanese artist based in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Her artwork focuses on the body and narratives of war. Her hybrid animations reflect the ever-changing circumstances of conflict. She fragments and re-constructs photoshoots and archival imagery to re-invent new abstracted characters, architectural monuments, and landscapes.
Exhibitions and film festivals include: Poetry is Not a Luxury, The Center for Book Arts, New York City; Malta Film Festival (4th), Eden Cinemas, St. Julian, Malta; Another Hole in the Head (15th), New People Cinema, San Francisco; The Shape of Birds: Contemporary Art of the Middle East and North Africa, Newport Art Museum, Rhode Island; Kerry Film Festival (19th), Killarney Co. Kerry, Ireland; Altered, Gallery #106, Minnesota Street Project, San Francisco; PHOTOFAIRS SF, Connected: The Channel of Democracy: Womanhood, Power & Freedom in Video Art, Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture, San Francisco; Blue Plum Animation Festival (13th), Johnson City, Tennessee; Detritus, San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art, San Jose, California; What Makes Us?, Focus Gallery, Zimmerli Art Museum, New Jersey; Harlem International Film Festival (11th), MIST Harlem, New York City; Creation Stories, Johnson & Johnson World Headquarters Gallery, New Jersey; Bring It Home: (Re)Locating Cultural Legacy Through the Body, San Francisco Arts Commission Galleries, San Francisco; PULSE New York, Art Fair, New York City; UNTITITLED, Art Fair, Miami Beach, Florida; Editions/Artists’ Book Fair, New York City; International Film Awards Berlin, KINO im Kulturhaus Spandau, Berlin; The Chasm Arena, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; Women Redrawing the World Stage, SOHO20 Chelsea Gallery, New York City; The Fertile Crescent: Gender, Art, and Society, Bernstein Gallery, Princeton University, New Jersey; The Third Half, The Public Theater, New York City; Facettes, Espace SD, Beirut. Residency awards include: Perspectives: Here and There, Brodsky Center for Innovative Editions, Rutgers University, New Jersey; and Vermont Studio Center.
Barakeh currently serves as Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs at San Francisco Art Institute.

Zeina Barakeh (b. Beirut) is a Palestinian-Lebanese artist based in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Her artwork focuses on the body and narratives of war. Her hybrid animations reflect the ever-changing circumstances of conflict. She fragments and re-constructs photoshoots and archival imagery to re-invent new abstracted characters, architectural monuments, and landscapes.

Barakeh’s animation Homeland Insecurity (2016) investigates various mechanisms of war and their fragmentation of the body and the self. Drawing from various transnational mythologies and current and historical events, the main characters are the Centaur, a male human head and torso with a lower body of a horse, and the Horse, an avatar of the artist’s own body with the head of a horse. The colonizing Centaurs are based on the mounted soldiers of the British Mandate of Palestine (1920–1948), while the Horses depict colonized subjects, embodying agency and resistance. The animation draws upon cotton as a core resource in the economics and spread of Empire from the Islamic Era, through the Crusaders, through slavery and into the present.

Her animation Slam Bang Blue (2018) is a continuation from earlier animations. The plot unfolds from a cavernous manifestation of the Horses’ subconscious fears and dreams that are inundated by traumatic memories of war inflicted by the Centaurs. Under the watchful gaze of a historical clock, the Horses emerge from the cave to retake their land from the Centaurs, with the animation ending in an enchanted wave of consciousness.

Art works