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SPOTLIGHT

Farah Al-Qasimi

Um Al Naar (Mother of Fire), 2019, stills from video with color and sound: 40 min. 

Courtesy The Third Line, Dubai; and Helena Anrather, New York.

The crumbling coastal settlement of Jazirat Al Hamra is widely rumored to be haunted. In Farah Al-Qasimi’s debut film, Um Al Naar (Mother of Fire) (2019), the titular djinni is first seen wandering through the ghost town, swathed in a patchwork of floral sheets. Set in present-day United Arab Emirates, the remainder of the film plays like a reality TV segment in which

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