In this episode of Password:Protected, artist Morehshin Allahyari, discusses The Laughing Snake (2018), a hypertext-narrative in which she uses the reiminaging of “monstrous female and genderless queer figures” found in Middle Eastern folklore as a tool to analyze the status and mistreatment of women in a hetero-patriarchy. The Laughing Snake is part of a larger body of work she calls: She Who Sees the Unknown, a collection of remixed parables centering legendary figures that Allahyari examines through the lens of new technologies, specifically virtual reality and additive manufacturing.
Morehshin Allahyari is an artist, activist, writer, and educator. She was born and raised in Iran and moved to the United States in 2007. Her work deals with the political, social, and cultural contradictions we face every day. She thinks about technology as a philosophical toolset to reflect on objects and as a poetic means to document our personal and collective lives and struggles in the 21st century. Morehshin has been commissioned and exhibited extensively by institutions and festivals including the Venice Biennale di Archittectura, New Museum, The Whitney Museum of American Art, Pompidou Center, Museum of Contemporary Art in Montreal, Tate Modern, Queens Museum, Pori Museum, Powerhouse Museum, Dallas Museum of Art, and Museum für Angewandte Kunst.
In addition to her piece for the Password:Protected series, for the first time, Morehshin navigates the interactive web-based piece for the Broadcast and uses it to stage a unique performance. The Laughing Snake (2018) was commissioned by the Whitney Museum of American Art and can be viewed here. The piece was made possible with additional support from a Pioneer Works Tech Residency.