Basma Alsharif, We Began By Measuring Distance, 2009, 19 minutes, video

This Story Begins and Ends With Us

Basma Alsharif

A Space Main Gallery

June 1 – July 14, 2012

Curated by: cheyanne turions, Erik Martinson

Copresented by: the Images Festival, Pleasure Dome, Trinity Square Video

Reception and Artist Talk, Thursday, July 12, 5 pm In conjunction with No Reading After the Internet @ A Space Gallery, 401 Richmond St. W., Suite 110.
The Re-Enactments Workshop Tuesday, July 10, 10 am – 5 pm Public Presentation Thursday, July 12, 7 – 9 pm @ Trinity Square Video, 401 Richmond St. W., Suite 376

A Space Gallery, Pleasure Dome, the Images Festival and Trinity Square Video are pleased to present This Story Begins and Ends with Us, an exhibition by artist Basma Alsharif. With a skillful play between moving images, text, translation and voice, the media work of Alsharif calls out the viewer’s position of watching, asking us to reconsider the certainty with which we know the world. Alsharif’s practice evinces an interest in how people relate to and internalize geopolitical shifts that occur within their lifetimes, and those they carry with them from past generations. Weaving structural visual codes with material archives, her aim is to decentralize content and produce work that operates through a multi-vantage perspective, thereby transforming information into a visceral experience.

Curated by Erik Martinson and cheyanne turions, This Story Begins and Ends with Us will feature recent work by Alsharif, including The Story of Milk & Honey (2011), Turkish Delight (2010), We Began By Measuring Distance (2009), and Everywhere was the Same (2007). Alongside this showcase of Alsharif’s work will be Peer Pressure, a curatorial initiative by the artist, featuring a contextualization of her practice through the influence of her peers. What links these works together is the kind of questioning the artists perform in regards to their environments (physical, virtual and/or formal), and the way the artists push the boundaries of the mediums and genres in which they work, thereby creating a kind of positive peer pressure.

The artist talk at A Space Gallery, in collaboration with No Reading After the Internet, will feature selections from Helter Skelter (1974), the true crime classic, which will be offered up as a way to examine an author’s or artist’s relationship to historical detail and corresponding ideas of accuracy.

Alsharif will also be leading a workshop at Trinity Square Video entitled The Re-Enactments. The workshop is aimed at artists interested in exploring issues outside of their practice or current projects. Participants will explore the functional uses of re-enactments within various societies, leading to a group exhibition that reflects the activities of the workshop. For more information and registration, please visit

Special thanks to the Canada Council for their support of this programming through their Visiting Foreign Artist program and to Circuit Gallery for their generous support in creating the artist’s prints.


Born in Kuwait to Palestinian parents, Basma Alsharif spent her early
childhood in France, and then immigrated to the US after being denied
residency. She received an MFA from UIC in 2007 and relocated to Egypt.
Alsharif has since worked between the US, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan and the
UAE on multi-media and single channel installation works. Alsharif’s work
has shown in exhibitions and film festivals internationally.

cheyanne turions is a Toronto-based writer and curator. She is the
director of No Reading After the Internet (Toronto), sits on the Board of
Directors for Fillip and the Editorial Advisory Committee at FUSE, and
recently worked with the Images Festival as Off Screen Exhibitions
Assistant. Currently, she is the Shop Manager at Art Metropole. She
maintains a website devoted to dialogue around curatorial practice at

Erik Martinson is an independent curator and has been a member of the
Pleasure Dome programming collective since 2006. He has curated film/video
programs for Art Star 3: Video Art Biennale at SAW Gallery (2007), Vtape’s
Curatorial Incubator (2009), Rendezvous with Madness Film Festival (2010,
2011) and The Images Festival (2012), plus numerous events and screenings
with Pleasure Dome. He has worked in video distribution at Vtape as the
Submissions and Outreach Coordinator since 2005.