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Cultural Exchange Rate

Tania El Khoury

Presented by Fisher Center at Bard + The Invisible Dog Art Center

photo credits: Tania El Khoury (1,2) + Ziad Abu-Rish (3)

“An intelligent, sensitive, and humorous work.”

The cruelest of borders are invisible to the eye and present in everyday life. The death traps set within a moving body of water and the concealed militarization of faraway border villages. Cultural Exchange Rate is an interactive live art project in which artist Tania El Khoury shares her family memoirs of life in a border village between Lebanon and Syria. One marked by war survival, valueless currency collection, brief migration to Mexico, and a river that disregards the colonial and national borders. The audience is invited to immerse their heads into one family’s secret boxes to explore sounds, images, and textures of traces of more than a century of border crossings. Cultural Exchange Rate is based on the artist’s recorded interviews with her late grandmother, oral histories collected in her village in Akkar, the discovery of lost relatives in Mexico City, and the family’s attempt to secure dual citizenship.


Thursday, January 11 through Sunday, January 21

Cultural Exchange Rate is a performance with ticketed timed entries. Performances will be held:

Thursdays and Sundays @
12 pm / 1:30 pm / 3 pm / 5:30 pm / 7 pm

Fridays and Saturdays  @
12 pm / 1:30 pm / 3 pm / 5:30 pm / 7 pm / 8:30 pm

Run time: 50 minutes


The Invisible Dog Art Center
51 Bergen St,
Brooklyn, NY 11201


Tania El Khoury is a live artist whose work focuses on audience interactivity and its political potential. She creates installations and performances in which the audience is a witness and an active collaborator. Tania’s work has been translated to multiple languages and shown in 32 countries across 6 continents in spaces ranging from museums to cable cars. She is the recipient of the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts, Soros Art Fellowship, the Bessies Outstanding Production Award, the International Live Art Prize, the Total Theatre Innovation Award, and the Arches Brick Award. Tania is Distinguished Artist in Residence of Theater & Performance and the Director of the OSUN Center for Human Rights & the Arts at Bard College in New York. She holds a PhD from Royal Holloway, University of London. She is associated with Forest Fringe collective of artists in the UK and is a co-founder of the urban research and live art collective, Dictaphone Group in Lebanon.


Tania El Khoury is an artist in residence at the Fisher Center at Bard with lead support from the Mellon Foundation.

Cultural Exchange Rate is a co-commission of the Fisher Center, Spielart Munich, and Onassis Stegi Athens.

Cultural Exchange Rate is produced by the Fisher Center at Bard, and originally premiered in the Fisher Center’s 2019 LAB Biennial: Where No Wall Remains, which received support from the Ford Foundation; Open Society Foundations; Arab Fund for Arts and Culture; Thendara Foundation; John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation; Consortium on Forced Migration, Displacement, and Education; The Vilcek Foundation; and the Institute of International Education.

The Fisher Center develops, produces, and presents performing arts across disciplines through new productions and context-rich programs. As a premier professional performing arts center and a hub for research and education, the Fisher Center supports artists, students, and audiences in the development and examination of artistic ideas, offering perspectives from the past and present, as well as visions of the future.

The Invisible Dog Art Center is housed in a three-story former factory building in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. Built in 1863, our 30,000 square foot facility was the site of various industrial endeavors, most notably a belt factory that manufactured the famous Walt Disney invisible dog party trick, after which our center is named.The ground floor is used for exhibitions, performances, and public events featuring visual artists, performers, and curators from around the world. The second and third floors are divided into over 30 artists’ studios and are integral to the vast creative community of The Invisible Dog. Here, art and architecture feed off each other organically. The artists who walk through our doors infuse our space with their creative energy and make The Invisible Dog Art Center a unique home for the arts.