The idea of Sumac Space emerged in 2020 as a non-profit platform presenting contemporary art from the Middle East* through digital programs, critical writing and research. Devoted to the Middle East and its thriving contemporary art, we work with artists and curators, who address contemporary urgencies in the context of the challenging social and political circumstances of the region. Seeking new ways of experiencing art through digital modalities, Sumac Space experiments with rethinking the existing forms of art presentation and looks for meaningful uses of digital communication to meet, to relate, to be together. By experimenting with different methods, we search for ways to stimulate subjective imagination and critical relation against the currents of the attention economy and incessant excess of digital representation.
Alongside exploring our programs, such as digital Exhibitions, Sumac Space invites viewers to explore Artists’ Rooms and Dialogues. Artists’ Rooms are digital architectures curated entirely by artists themselves that are here to allow for connecting with the artists’ thinking process and research, beyond actual artworks. We believe that art practice is so much more than final works and therefore our aim is to disclose what is formative and proliferates artists’ practice on different levels. If Artists’ Rooms is primarily a space for viewing and contemplating relations between different artifacts and subjects, Dialogues is a place for being vocal. Here, authors and artists get together in conversations, interviews, essays and experimental forms of writing. We aim to create a space of exchange, where the published results are often the most visible manifestations of relations, friendships and collaborations built around Sumac Space.
At the core of our programming and publishing approach is our aim for different voices to be heard. We believe in the irreplaceable role of artists in re-imagining and shaping our pasts, presents and futures and that they must have a public place for their research and diverse forms of expression. Therefore, gradually building a community of artists, curators, researchers and writers, we invite diverse voices to actively participate in forming Sumac Space through curating exhibitions, writing texts, presenting work in progress and conveying conversations with each other. Collaboration and collective study are qualities we are proposing, not as themes and theoretical concepts but as unconditional ways of working.
Contact us to share ideas and proposals on how to work together and improve our ever-transforming programs.
* The geographical term Middle East is not neutral; rather, it is a Eurocentric word with colonial origins.
Press Coverage (ENG / IT)
+ Artribune, Sumac Space in conversation with Ofelia Scisca
+ Memecult, On Sumac Space–From Now and the Future