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Rene Gabri was born in Teheran, Iran.

Ayreen Anastas in Bethlehem, Palestine.

They both live and work in New York.


And You, What Do You Seek?, 2017

In a world increasingly marked by extreme forms of violence, destruction, deprivation, privatization, enclosure, and foreclosure of a sense of a common life; the artists have used the planned title of the last and unwritten chapter of René Daumal’s book Mount Analogue, “And you, what do you seek?”,  as a kind of engine to explore their own present and environment. 

The work is an attempt to weave together some of the artists’ reflections, confronting Daumal’s question with notes, fragments, and recollections of encounters with villagers in different areas of Armenia. It forms one part of a larger study they have initiated into the relation of the quotidian struggles -they and the people they meet are involved in- with the historical forces and ruptures of Armenia, marked by the genocide of 1915, the revolution of 1917, and independence in 1991. 

How to relate to these ruptures and what do they ask of us today? And does what we seek, in our everyday life, acquire greater sense or meaning in the light or darkness of these historical events?


Ayreen Anastas' and Rene Gabri's collaborative projects have evolved a great deal through their work at 16 Beaver. Their Radioactive Discussion series was a physical counterpart to their fictional Homeland Security Cultural Bureau project.

Recent shows include: Sensibile Comune, Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Rome,  2017; Fellbach 13th Small Sclpture Triennial, Fellbach, 2016; Armenity, National Pavillion of Armenia awarded Golden Lion, 56th Venice Biennial, 2015; In the absence of the objects seen at Sharjah Biennial 12, 2015; dOCUMENTA 13 (2012).

AA Foundation 2017 Grantee

And You, What Do You Seek?
Visual documentation for the project

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