Nour Ballout

Artadia Awardee

“In Ballout’s work, the artist strikes an affective relationship to the past, that neither privileges the logics of official archives nor the written histories of the state, but instead, weaves together subjugated accounts drawn intimate personal spaces and collective sites of belonging.”- juror Gee Wesley, Curatorial Assistant Department of Media and Performance, MoMA.

Nour Ballout is the 2024 LeRoy Neiman and Janet Byrne Neiman Foundation Artadia Award recipient.

Nour Ballout (b. 1993 Beirut, Lebanon) is an interdisciplinary artist and curator challenging who and what is erased in an archive / history, constructed by the colonizer. In subject and form their work expresses the tension between the desire to be represented and the fear of being surveilled. Their work has been nationally showcased in both group and solo exhibitions, with recent solo shows including “Muslims of North America” at the Wayne State Collections gallery and “The (De)Construction” at The Rotunda Gallery in Ann Arbor, MI.

As a survivor of a war that destroyed their childhood images, Nour is compelled to create their own archive. Further, as an immigrant from Lebanon to Detroit to Dearborn, they come from an intersection of people that have been looked at and surveilled but not seen. Their experience of assimilation exposed the social construction of norms, and how our choices either uphold or disrupt them.