During the uprising in Syria it has become customary to bury murdered activists in gardens. According to Tania El Khoury, through these home burials the living and the dead reciprocally protect each other: In this way the dead don't bring their family members to the attention of the state and subject them to additional dangers, and the living keep the victims' identities and life stories from being forgotten or misused by the regime.
GARDENS SPEAK is an interactive sound installation that tells the stories of ten persons. Tania El Khoury has researched, together with the friends and family members of the dead, each one of the lives. The stories are supplemented by audio material.
Concept and direction Tania El KhouryProducer Jessica Harrington Research assistant and writer (Arabic)Keenena Issa Calligraphy and tombstones design Dia Batal Sound recording and editing Khairy Eibesh (Stronghold Sound)
Tania El Khoury, who lives and works in London and Beirut, creates interactive, immersive performances that attempt to explore and question the relationships between individuality and public spaces. She is a co-founder of Dictaphone Group, a multidisciplinary collective that investigates municipal spaces in Beirut with location-specific interventions in buses, fishing boats, or streetcars. For El Khoury's piece in Munich, STORIES OF REFUGE, Syrian asylum seekers filmed a day in their everyday lives in Munich, and the artist arranged the video and audio data into an installation in a municipal space. Tania El Khoury's works have been shown at, among other places, Watermill Center; Tanzquartier Wien; and Artsadmin.
Production and realization
Production Co-commissioner and producer: Fierce, Next Wave and Live at LICA. Supported by Arts Council of England and Artsadmin Artist Bursary Scheme