Winter: Emii Alrai
Photographs by Jules Lister and Jonathan Basset
Emii Alrai (b. 1993) is an artist based in Leeds.
Alrai’s practice is informed by inherited nostalgia, geographical identity and post-colonial museum practices of collecting and displaying objects. Focusing on the ancient mythologies from the Middle East alongside personal oral histories of Iraq, Alrai weaves together narratives by forging artefacts and visualising residues of cultural collision. Often working at a large scale, Alrai creates sculptural installations that recall museological displays and diorama.
Alrai graduated from BA Fine Art (2016) and MA Art Gallery and Museum Studies (2018) at the University of Leeds.
Recent solo exhibitions include The High Dam, The Tetley, Leeds (2020); Tutelaries, VITRINE, London (2019); House of Teeming Cattle, Two Queens, Leicester (2019); An Ancient Quiver, GLOAM, Sheffield (2018). Alrai was a Yorkshire Sculpture International Engagement Artist in 2019 and was selected for The Tetley Artist Associate Programme in 2018. She is a co-founder of artist collective Nocturne and participated in Making Marks, a project by The Arab British Centre and Mudeena Kuwait. Alrai is currently an artist in residence at Triangle Astérides Residency, Marseille.