Stills: 1 2 3

Ras Muhammad

2.26 min
Video Performance, 2 channel projection
Ras Muhammad, Sinai

Marcin positions herself as a conquerer of the desert in the national park Ras Muhammad via a belly dance. The park was established to protect against the urban sprawl from Sharm el Sheikh and other coastal developments. The name literally means "Mohammad's Head," where "head" in this instance means “headland." There is a saying in the area that the name arose because in side view the contour of the cliff looks like the profile of a bearded man's face, with horizontal hard strata providing the nose and bearded chin. In chimeric scenes of endurance dancing on a distant hill, her body is adorned in traditional costume, shimmering in a tongue-and-cheek manner, vulnerable yet retaining self-control over her physicality. The dance is then counterfeit with images that were collected around the Sinai district: A man and a woman appear in slow motion moving alongside the hot asphalt of a lonely street, a scratched advertisement of an Arab ruler, stacked vases, a desolate Hotel ruin called Regina Sharm, an airplane, all culminating to a general malaise of abandon. The estranged dance is a glimmer of optimism against the sense of stagnation. This video was developed out of a commission by Dortmunder Kunstverein, sculpture museum Glaskasten Marl and Werkstatt Bleichhäuschen in Rheda.