press release

What We Know that We Don't Know
Opening Reception on Wednesday, June 21, 6–9PM
21 Jun 2017–19 Aug 2017

What We Know that We Don’t Know, organized by KADIST San Francisco and curated by Arash Fayez, presents works by eight contemporary artists: Nazgol Ansarinia, A.K. Burns, Nicolás Consuegra, Trisha Donnelly, Claire Fontaine, Ha Tae-Bum, Walid Raad, and Miljohn Ruperto. The exhibition explores the poetic space of paradox, where works intentionally provide multiple angles of interpretation and opposing meanings collide.

What We Know that We Don’t Know draws inspiration from poetic tendencies in Persian literature, where metaphor, irony, and paradox are understood as devices that allow artists to encode their opinions in complex cultural and political circumstances. In a cultural context, this is best illustrated through the concept of ta’arof, which designates a set of social behaviors defining how people should live in society and treat each other. A host is obliged, for example, to offer anything a guest might desire, while the visitor, in equal measure, is obliged to refuse it.

This exhibition is part of a KADIST initiative dedicated to commissioning exhibitions, artworks, and events that deepen the organization’s engagement in the Middle East and augment its proximity to artists from Iran.