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Issam Kourbaj, Handmade arabic letter stamps. Photo: This Is Photography. Courtesy the artist.
For Adults

In Conversation: Issam Kourbaj

24 April, 6.30–8pm

Join us for a special event in the Kettle’s Yard house, where artist Issam Kourbaj will be in conversation with exhibition curator Guy Haywood.

This event has passed. £12 (£9 Friends, £6 students)

Please note attendees can visit the exhibition Issam Kourbaj: Urgent Archive from 5.30pm.

About the Exhibition

2 March – 26 May 2024

Since 2011 Issam Kourbaj’s artwork has responded to the ongoing conflict in Syria, and reflects on the suffering of his fellow Syrians and the destruction of his cultural heritage. This exhibition presents key works from this period alongside a new series which explores themes of loss, memory and renewal.

The exhibition – the artist’s largest to date – will include installation, sculpture, performance and works on paper. Kourbaj will be present at intervals throughout the exhibition, which will evolve as he adds to the displays.

Find out more about Issam Kourbaj: Urgent Archive

Issam Kourbaj, Urgent archives, written in blood, 2019. Image: This Is Photography. Courtesy the artist.

About Issam Kourbaj

Issam Kourbaj in his studio. Photo: Mourad Kourbaj

Issam Kourbaj was born in Syria and trained at the Institute of Fine Arts in Damascus, the Repin Institute of Fine Arts & Architecture in Leningrad (St Petersburg) and at Wimbledon School of Art. He has lived in Cambridge, UK, since 1990.

Since 2011 his artwork has related to the Syrian Crisis and reflects on the suffering of his fellow Syrians and the destruction of his cultural heritage.

Read Issam’s biography


Please note, for conservation and security reasons, no bags or large coats are allowed in the house. Limited bag storage is available at reception.

This event will take place in the extension of the house which is accessible, with some limitations. The upper part of the ground floor extension area is accessible for wheelchair users and the ground floor extension area of the house is newly accessible for wheelchair users with a ramp. There is no lift to the upper floors of the house. If you call in advance or ask at the information desk we can reserve an accessible seat for you. Please get in touch on 01223 748100 or email

Visit our Access page