23 March 2005

Mona Hatoum: Exile from main street

Endoscopy, electricity and estrangement drive the thought-provoking art of Mona Hatoum.

"I don't know where this is going," interjects Mona Hatoum during an exclusive interview with The Bulletin last month. "Is this about me or is it about the work?" Well, when you're one of the most lionised figures in contemporary art, about to mount your first Australian show, and it's called Over My Dead Body, then it's got to be about both.

A survey of Hatoum's sculpture, performance and installation since 1992, the show was nabbed for Sydney by Museum of Contemporary Art director Elizabeth Ann Macgregor, when she saw it at Berlin's prestigious Hamburger Kunsthalle lastyear. Hatoum will be in Sydney to oversee the show's installation and participate in public Q&A sessions.

"Much of my work gives a sense of uneasiness with the world," says the Beirut-born Palestinian, who has lived in Britain since 1975 when civil war broke out in Lebanon.