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Re-figuring the Future Through 3D Printing Jinn: Morehshin Allahyari’s Re-figuring as a Tool of Resistance

Author:

Zeynep Naz Inansal

Utrecht University, NL
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Abstract

She Who Sees the Unknown (2017) is an ongoing artistic research project by Iranian multi-media artist Morehshin Allahyari in which she recreates monstrous female figures of Middle Eastern origin (jinn) through 3D printing technology and her concept of ‘re-figuring’. The latter refers to the conscious reclaiming and re-appropriating of the stories of female figures of jinn. This article is dedicated to exploring the concept of re-figuring, Allahyari’s artistic research process that involves recreating the stories of Middle Eastern monstrous figures. It shows how through re- figuring, she reclaims these jinn and empowers them to challenge contemporary forms of oppression. She highlights their strengths and the ways they can be powerful figures in both the past as well as the present. Through this work, she has created a freely available online archive, as well as a physical archive of 3D printed sculptures of the figures and multi-media artworks that include new media forms like video and virtual animation. In order to explain how re- figuring can be seen as a tool of resistance, this article discusses feminist philosopher Donna Haraway's ideas on the use of storytelling as such a tool. Furthermore, the workings of Afrofuturism and counterfuturisms are suggested as concepts that are helpful for better understanding how re-figuring functions in She Who Sees the Unknown. Ultimately, this article argues that re-figuring is a tool of resistance for Allahyari.

How to Cite: Inansal, Z.N., 2020. Re-figuring the Future Through 3D Printing Jinn: Morehshin Allahyari’s Re-figuring as a Tool of Resistance. Junctions: Graduate Journal of the Humanities, 5(1), pp.62–74. DOI: http://doi.org/10.33391/jgjh.89
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Published on 12 Dec 2020.
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