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Tea with Culture

Podcast featuring discussions and interviews about the cultural happenings in the United Arab Emirates presented by Hind Mezaina (The Culturist) and Wael Hattar.


Home | Food - Talk and Film screening on 16 September 2017

Home: Food | Music | Sports is a series of upcoming events I developed and curated for the National Pavilion UAE who commissioned me to come up with a programme in the UAE that can be in dialog with the curatorial theme of its exhibition and publication Rock, Paper, Scissors: Positions in Play that is currently showing at the Venice Biennale. 

The programme I developed will be mostly in dialogue with the publication Rock, Paper, Scissors: Positions in Play, which includes a series of written and visual essays by writers, curators, academics and artists. The book is available to be purchased here

The events will inlcude a series of talks and film screenings that will address how food, music and sports contribute to building a sense of home and community.

They will take place across Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah between September and November 2017. The National has published a feature about this programme which you can read here.




The following is information about the first two events that will take place in Abu Dhabi on 16th November. Stay tuned for details about the next events about music (in Dubai) and sports (in Sharjah) which will be announced in October. 



Home | Food - Creating a sense of home through food  
Date: Saturday, 16th September, 3.00-4.00pm
Venue: Meylas, Al Muneera, Al Raha Beach, Abu Dhabi
(location map

I will be in conversation with writer and NYU Abu Dhabi Institute lecturer Deepak Unnikrishnan about creating a sense of home and community through food. Unnikrishnan's course "Steet Food" at NYU Abu Dhabi invites his students to explore the city through food. We will be talking about this and more on Saturday.

The talk will take place at Meylas, an Emirati cafe/restaurant where you will be able to order delicious tea and light snacks whilst listening to our discussion which I am looking forward to sharing with the attendees. 

The talk is free to attend and if you are on Facebook, you can RSVP here



Film Screening

Home | Food - Soul Food Stories 
Date: Saturday, 16th September, 6.00-8.00pm
Venue: Cinema Space, Manarat Al Saadiyat Auditorium, Saadiyat, Abu Dhabi
(location map

In collaboraion with Cinema Space, a screening of the documentary Soul Food Stories will take place shortly after the talk at Meylas.  The screening is free to attend, and you can RSVP here. Please note the cafe at this venue is closed, so you can bring along a small snack and drink with you if you like. 


Soul Food Stories
Directed by Tonislav Hristov
Bulgaria, Finland | 2013 | 69 minutes
Bulgarian | English Subtitles
Rating: [ G ] - General Audiences (All ages admitted)

Satovcha is a small Bulgarian village with 2021 residents of different religious and ethnical groups (Orthodox Bulgarians, Muslim Turks, Pomacs and Evangelist Gypsies). People were divided by their past full of conflicts, but now they have find a way to each other through a simple medium – The Food. Now the plates on the table are loaded with pride, identity, common past and friendship, but all this comes with a price. 



Hope to see you at these two events in Abu Dhabi on Saturday, 16th November. 


Summer Series 2017: Sea, Sun & Swimming Pool - A Summer Supercut


This is the last of my Summer Series post for this year. I leave you with a Summer Supercut by MaxDfry of summer scenes from films.

Hope you enjoyed the series on the blog and enjoy your summer wherever you are (or winter if you are in the southern hemisphere). 


Summer Series 2017: Our Scary Summer: 1979 by Nelson Carvajal


The state of the world today feels like a 'shit show' (pardon my language). With Trump's America revealing itself in the news everyday, war and conflict in the Arab region, refugee crisis, threat of nuclear missile attacks in North Korea - it's very hard not to feel freaked out. 

I'm coping by watching films and Twin Peaks: The Return, which for me is the best thing this summer. I hope to share more thoughts on the show in a separate post another time (and if you are not watching it, shame on you).

For now, here is a video essay by Nelson Carvajal from three years ago about films from 1979. 

Films like The Omega ManDamnation Alley, and Soylent Green seemed half in love with the world’s death.  What did the earth that the Nostromo’s crew were trying to return to actually look like?  Probably something much like the one depicted in these films. The images I watched on the nightly news seemed to be offering a disturbing preview of that world.



Summer Series 2017: Why Jaws is a perfect summer movie by Nolan Dean


Earlier this month I watched 47 Meters Down about two sisters trapped in a shark cage at the bottom of the ocean. Last summer we had The Shallows about a surfer who is stuck on a rock 200 yards from shore trying to not get eaten by a shark. I really liked both films, to me they are the perfect summer horror films. 

There is no denying every shark film is an ode to Jaws, although I've not watched the Sharknado films and based on what I've heard about them, not sure where these films fit.

But back to Jaws. Here's a video essay by Nolan Dean explaining why he thinks Jaws is a perfect summer movie.  



Nolan Dean on YouTube




Summer Series 2017: Summer Fashion 1960s


These fashion promo videos from the 1960s features a group of girls on holiday in their summer best. 








Summer Series 2017: Beachwear Fashion 1940s

Loving the beachwear fashion featured in these two short videos.  








Summer Series 2017: Summer Fashions 1930s


 Elegant summer fashion from the 1930s.





Summer Series 2017: Underwater Skiing in the 1950s 

This is the first time I find out about underwater skiing.



Summer Series 2017: Blimp Water Skiing and Aquaplaning in the 1930s


Before the sports of water skiing as we know it today, there was Blimp Water Skiing and Aquaplaning. 





Summer Series 2017: Summer Sports in California 


I am a sucker for vintage water sports video. These two feature diving and paddle polo.