Nadia Refaei: Make Kabsah With Me
Make kabsah with me weaves together personal and broader narratives – touching on the history of migration through West Asia, the complexities of the Arab cultural landscape and the immigrant experience in Australia.
These narratives are told through conversations with my father; a first-generation Saudi, who grew up in Riyadh to a Syrian family, and migrated to Hobart around 30 years ago.
Memory and significance is explored through a dish that is widely loved within the Arab world but relatively unknown in Australia. This work reflects on cooking as a format for communication and exchange online, as well as a means of surface-level cultural consumption – and considers whether these existing roles can be used to provoke a curiosity for deeper cross-cultural engagement.
Nadia Refaei is an artist based in nipaluna (Hobart). She received a Bachelor of Arts in 2014 and Bachelor of Fine Arts (Honours) in 2015 from the University of Tasmania. Her arts and curatorial practice draws on both personal and broader histories to explore the power dynamics and politics of intersectional identity as an Arab-Australian. Nadia uses photography, installation and video to interrogate Western imperialist narratives, examining issues such as displacement, cultural dislocation and the body. Her practice combines both process-based and research-driven methods.
In 2020, 4A Digital is