Sultan Al Qassemi

Spring 2017 Practitioner-in-Residence

Special Workshop Title: The Politics of Modern Arab Art  

Special Event: Politics in Modern Arab Art: A Lecture by Sultan Al Qassemi on May 1, 2017  

Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi is a United Arab Emirates-based columnist whose articles have appeared in The Financial Times, The Independent, The Guardian, The Huffington Post, The New York Times, Foreign Policy, Open Democracy, and The Globe and Mail, as well as other notable publications.  He is also a prominent commentator on Arab affairs on Twitter (@SultanAlQassemi). Rising in prominence during the Arab Spring, his tweets became a major news source, rivaling the major news networks at the time, until TIME magazine listed him in the “140 Best Twitter Feeds of 2011.”

Sultan is also the founder of the Barjeel Art Foundation in Sharjah, an independent initiative established to contribute to the intellectual development of the art scene in the Arab region by building a prominent and publicly accessible art collection in the United Arab Emirates. In the first quarter of 2017 Barjeel Art Foundation will inaugurate exhibitions at the Institut du monde arabe in Paris, Yale University Art Gallery in the US and the National Gallery of Jordan in Amman.


Suhel Nafar

Fall 2016 Artist-in-Residence

Special Workshop Title:  Memory Metamorphosis  

Special Event: Memory Metamorphosis: An Exhibition on Palestinian Memory (December 9, 2016 to January  31, 2017)

Suhel Nafar is a New York/Palestine based filmmaker and artist. He has worked on a number of projects together with fellow artist Jacqueline Reem Salloum, including the feature length documentary, “Slingshot Hip Hop,” (2008 Sundance), a series of short documentaries for Arab American Stories on PBS TV, the music video, “If I Could Go Back in Time”, and the short kids film, “Yala to the Moon” (2012 TIFF Kids).  Nafar, who is a member of the first Palestinian hip hop group, DAM, recently co-produced the feature film "Junction 48" (Berinale 2016).  


Jacqueline Reem Salloum

Fall 2016 Artist-in-Residence

Special Workshop Title: Memory Metamorphosis

Special Event: Memory Metamorphosis: An Exhibition on Palestinian Memory (December 9, 2016 to January  31, 2017)

Jacqueline Reem Salloum is a New York/Palestine based filmmaker and artist. She is the director of the award winning film, Slingshot Hip Hop (2008 Sundance), the first feature-length documentary about Palestinian Hip-Hop. Alongside Suhel Nafar, Jackie directed DAM's official video clip "If I Could Go Back in Time", the first single of DAM's 2013 album Dabkeh on the Moon, as well as on other projects including a series of short documentaries for Arab American Stories on PBS TV and the short kids film, “Yala to the Moon” (2012 TIFF Kids). Salloum's experimental video, "Planet of the Arabs" (Sundance 2005) documents and challenges stereotypes of Arabs in Hollywood. She teaches film and video workshops at universities and institutions in the US and internationally.


Sarah Leah Whitson

Spring 2016 Human Rights Activist-in-Residence

Special Workshop Title: Dissecting the Democratic Moment in Egypt

Special Event: 'The Morsy Administration’s One Year in Power: What Went Wrong and Who's to Blame?' A Panel Discussion with Amr Darrag, Former Minister of Planning and International Cooperation, 2012-2013; founding member and Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee of the Freedom and Justice Party; Secretary General of the 2012 Constituent Assembly; Chairman, Egyptian Institute for Political and Strategic Studies 2014- date; Mohamed Almohandes, Member of the Supreme Council of the Egypt Strong Party, headed by presidential candidate Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh; served as spokesman of the party and participated in the National Dialogue, and Saif Abdel Fattah, Former senior adviser to President Mohamed Morsi, and former Professor of political science, Cairo University.

Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of Human Rights Watch's Middle East and North Africa Division, oversees the work of the division in 19 countries, with staff located in 10 countries. She has led dozens of advocacy and investigative missions throughout the region, focusing on issues of armed conflict, accountability, legal reform, migrant workers, and political rights. She has published widely on human rights issues in the Middle East in international and regional media, including The New York Times, Foreign Policy, The Los Angeles Times, and CNN. She appears regularly on Al-Jazeera, BBC, NPR, and CNN. Before joining Human Rights Watch, Whitson worked in New York for Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley and Harvard Law School. Whitson is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She speaks Armenian and Arabic.


Nancy Kricorian

Fall 2015 Writer-in-Residence

Special Workshop Title: Life Stories: Transforming Family and Oral Histories into Narrative Non-Fiction and Fiction

Special Event: Art and Memory: Looking Back and Moving Forward on the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide, A Panel Event with photographer Diana Markosian and artist Silvina Der Meguerditchian, moderated by Hrag Vartanian, founder of Hyperallergic, on November 9, 2015.  

Nancy Kricorian is a New York City-based writer and activist. She is the author of the novels Zabelle, Dreams of Bread and Fire, and most recently All The Light There Was, which is set in the Armenian community of Paris during World War II. Her poetry and essays have been published in Guernica Magazine, The Minnesota Review, The Mississippi Review, Parnassus, and Women’s Studies Quarterly, among other periodicals.  She has been the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, The Anahid Literary Award, a Gold Medal of the Writers Union of Armenia, and the Daniel Varoujan Prize of the New England Poetry Club, among other honors. She participated in the 2010 Palestine Festival of Literature and is a fellow of Columbia University’s Women Mobilizing Memory Workshop. She has taught at Barnard, Columbia, Yale, Rutgers and Queens Colleges, as well as with Teachers and Writers Collaborative in the New York City Public Schools.


Adam Shatz

Spring 2015 Journalist-in-Residence

Special Workshop Title: Writing for a Non-Academic Audience

Special Event: 'What Went Wrong in Syria?,' A Panel Discussion with Mohammad Bazzi (Journalism, NYU), Steven Heydemann (U.S. Institute for Peace), George Saghir, and Lisa Wedeen (Political Science, University of Chicago) on April 30, 2015.  

Adam Shatz is a contributing editor at The London Review of Books and a contributor to The New York Times Magazine, The New York Review of BooksThe New Yorker, and other publications. Previously, he was a fellow at the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Writers and Scholars. Raised in Massachusetts, he studied history at Columbia University and has lived in New York City since 1990.