Feb 16, 2010

Wafaa Bilal ……and counting


Tattoo is latest medium for acclaimed Iraqi artist Wafaa Bilal in New York live performance

Where: Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts
Blackburn 20/20
323 W39th Street 5th Floor NY, NY 10018
Contact: Phillip Sanders, phil@efa1.org, 212-563-5855
Artist contact: w.wafaa@gmail.com
Project Director: Christine OHeron: christineoheron@gmail.com, (860) 782-1030

Wafaa Bilal's brother Haji was killed by a missile at a checkpoint in their hometown of Kufa, Iraq in 2004. Bilal feels the pain of both American and Iraqi families who’ve lost loved ones in the war, but the deaths of Iraqis like his brother are largely invisible to the American public.

…and Counting addresses this double standard as Bilal turns his own body – in a 24-hour live performance -- into a canvas, his back tattooed with a borderless map of Iraq covered with one dot for each Iraqi and American casualty near the cities where they fell. The 5,000 dead American soldiers are represented by red dots (permanent visible ink), and the 100,000 Iraqi casualties are represented by dots of green UV ink, seemingly invisible unless under black light. During the performance people from all walks of life read off the names of the dead.

Wafaa Bilal