Laila Shereen Sakr‘s presentation at The Past’s Digital Presence conference is titled “On Implementing the Digital Form: an Arabic-English Web-based Archive.” She is a poet, activist, scholar, and digital artist. Her work critically examines the nature of digital information and cyber existence in a post-9/11 world. She is primarily concerned with digital compositions, particularly in Arabic. In her art practice, she aims to bypass the notion of critic as authority who controls narrative. Instead, she aims to create a new authoritative but participatory role that resonates with web culture: that of co-editor, co-curator, and co-producer all at the same time. This is done by building and performing her work in digital and new media: her current projects include R-Shief, an Arabic-English web-based archive for exchange among activists, scholars, and new media artists; and VJ Um Amel, an interactive, live cinema narrative about an animated cyborg who is also an Arabic-speaking mother. Previously, she co-founded media and art collectives in Washington, DC, including the Guerrilla Poetry Insurgency and Word of Mouth. Presently, she is lecturer and research associate in the Digital Arts and New Media program at UC Santa Cruz.
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