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Description - Michael Rakowitz: Backstroke of the West by Omar Kholeif

This first monograph of the acclaimed Iraqi-American artist, Michael Rakowitz, takes a historical, scholarly, and in-depth look at his politically charged work. Michael Rakowitz's provocative and compelling multimedia projects confront American perceptions of Iraqi culture. Whether he's teaching students how to cook Iraqi food or recreating the thousands of items destroyed or stolen during the 2003 looting of the country's National Museum in Baghdad, Rakowitz is consistently working to address the trauma created by Saddam Hussein's regime and America's war on Iraq. This book explores ten of Rakowitz's most renowned works and one new project. The accompanying texts, drawings, and personal commentary offer a multi-faceted commentary on the artist's entire oeuvre. This book demonstrates art's ability to engage and confront the viewer and to generate greater understanding across cultural divides. AUTHOR: Omar Kholeif is Manilow Senior Curator and Director of Global Initiatives at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago. SELLING POINTS: Artist: Michael Rakowitz is an Iraqi-American artist, best known for his conceptual art displayed in non-gallery contexts. He is gaining international recognition, especially following his recent award of the Fourth Plinth commission in London's Trafalgar Square, which will be unveiled in 2018. Illustrations: The book features 195 illustrations, 120 in colour. They present ten of the artist's best-known works as well as one new project created for the Museum of Contemporary Art's exhibition. First major publication: Featuring the work of the acclaimed Iraqi-American artist, who explores contested social, cultural, and political histories.

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