Maryam Monalisa Gharavi is an artist, writer, and theorist. Her work explores the activated or ‘live’ film; meaning, legibility, and poetics (including neologism, epistolary fiction, abécédaires, and networked literary forms); visibility and iconography (from iconicized bandits to facial recognition technologies); surveillance, empire, and security; and emerging approaches to the interplay between aesthetic and political valences in the public domain.

She completed a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and Film & Visual Studies at Harvard University, and holds an M.F.A. in Film/Video at Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College. In 2014-15 she was a postdoctoral Fulbright Fellow and Visiting Professor at Birzeit University. She is author of the open text South/South and an editor at The New Inquiry.

Her work in film, video, performance, sound, and text has appeared in various exhibitions and publications including Townhouse Gallery of Contemporary Art, Beirut; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Art Dubai; Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha; Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley; Triple Canopy, New York; Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center, New York; Women and Performance, and Los Angeles Review of Books, among others. Previous artist residencies include Darat al Funun (Amman) and Mansion (Beirut).

Forthcoming books are The Distancing Effect (BlazeVOX), American Letters (Zer0), and a translation of Waly Salomão’s Algaravias: Echo Chamber (Ugly Duckling Presse).

With support from

Soudavar Memorial Foundation


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Please note all artist-in-residence biographies are accurate at the time of their residency. For up-to-date bios please visit the artist’s website.