New York: Baseera Khan
By Emily Chun
Artists and thinkers—notably Michel Foucault with his 1969 publication The Archaeology of Knowledge—have been problematizing the concept of the archive for decades, particularly its reification of power. Perhaps the Foucauldian idea of the archive as that which establishes the possibility of what can be said—rather than a collection of facts and memories—aligns most closely with the concept behind Baseera Khan’s first museum solo exhibition, “I Am an Archive,” with over 40 works at the Brooklyn Museum. Through multiple mediums, Khan tests their body as an archive that registers the asymmetries of power, exploring what it means to inhabit a Brown Muslim body in the United States with all its attendant conditions—alienation, pride, fluidity, surveillance.