Raja’a Khalid will debut “Change Your Life”, which critiques a fashionable practice of performative masculinity (i.e. working out) and places it as a contemporary motif of religiosity. A moving tableau, the commission consists of a gym, which will be open for five weeks to pre-selected young, male fitness professionals where they will participate in a workout regimen.
The installation looks carefully at the arts neighbourhood’s proximity to an increasing number of fitness centers within the framework theorised by Peter Sloterdijk in his 2013 book “You Must Change Your Life” in which the German philosopher tracks the history and philosophy of practice and discipline. By making their connections more explicit Khalid’s commission exposes the blurring between the potentially aesthetic, ascetic and athletic demands of contemporary life in the Gulf.