Iraqi-born artist Wafaa Bilal (MFA 2003) is renowned for provoking dialogue about international politics and internal dynamics through high profile, technologically-driven art projects that employ the use of robotics, the Internet, and photographic mobile mapping. For his 2007 installation, Domestic Tension, Bilal spent a month in a Chicago gallery with a paintball gun that people could shoot him with over the Internet. Bilal's work is constantly informed by the experience of fleeing his homeland and existing simultaneously in two worlds—his home in the "comfort zone" of the United States and his consciousness of the "conflict zone" in Iraq. Often using his own body as a medium, Bilal continues to challenge our comfort zones with projects like 3rdi, and Counting..., The Things I Could Tell, and his most recent participatory installation, 168:01. He is currently an Associate Arts Professor at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts.
Image Credit: Courtesy of the artist.