Trauma Then, Trauma Now: Performance workshop

Saturday 23 October, 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

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Venue: The Royal Standard, 3 Mann Street, Liverpool, L8 5AF

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Youcef Hadjazi’s project Trauma Then, Trauma Now explores collective and transgenerational trauma in post-colonial nations by focusing on the Algerian Civil War, often known as ‘The Black Decade’.

This exhibition at The Royal Standard is the first gallery presentation of Trauma Then, Trauma Now as part of Liverpool Arab Arts Festival 2021.

On Saturday 23 October, Hadjazi invites you to contribute to the development of the project in a special participatory performance workshop.

About the workshop

This workshop will start with a screening of Trauma Then, Trauma Now. Hadjazi will talk through the background and development of the work, followed by a collaborative performance workshop.

Participants are invited to shape the future development of the work by collaboratively dissecting the context of the project, while drawing parallels to their own identities or backgrounds. Hadjazi will draw on the outcomes of this workshop to add new perspectives to the work that are based on authenticity and lived experience.

All materials and content developed during this workshop will be kept in the exhibition space for the duration of the exhibition at The Royal Standard.

Signing up

We invite participants who are, or have heritage, from the South West Asian / North African region, but also to individuals who relate to transgenerational trauma and colonial violence.

All participants will be paid an honorarium for attending the workshop.

Places are limited.

After signing up for the workshop, a member of the Liverpool Arab Arts Festival team will email to confirm and provide further details.

About Trauma Then, Trauma Now

Trauma Then, Trauma Now explores collective and transgenerational trauma in post-colonial nations by focusing on the Algerian Civil War, often known as ‘The Black Decade’.

The Algerian Civil War was preceded by a number of internal conflicts in the late 1980’s and early 90’s. Gradually, a large, barbaric extremist group was formed, which terrorised the nation for a decade. Throughout the conflict, groups would build shelters and bases in rural parts of the country, which were often destroyed by the Algerian government by burning forests, leading to huge levels of deforestation and damage.

Hadjazi’s filmed performance, in collaboration with dramaturg illyr, embodies emotional and physical interpretations of the trauma provoked by the Civil War. Each individual movement revisits a place in time of conflict and colonial damage, inspired by the psychoanalytic practice of EMDR – a technique often used for patients suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. This technique can allow for the brain to be distracted from the body, meaning memories are able to be reprocessed.

Through this in-depth research of the war and its impacts on the Algerian population, Hadjazi aims to deconstruct and highlight the ways that a legacy of colonial trauma can transcend generations.

Movement & dramaturgy: illyr


Youcef Hadjazi is an Algerian-born, Kuwait-raised visual artist and creative producer. Predominantly based between London and Manchester, Hadjazi’s artistic work across lens-based media and performance while exploring multimedia possibilities.

He has exhibited across the UK and Europe, often while working closely with local communities. Hadjazi has collaborated with arts organisations, including: SomoS Berlin, Manchester International Festival, Live Art Development Agency (London), HOME Manchester, P21 Gallery (London) Homotopia Festival (Liverpool), Waterside Arts Centre (Manchester).

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