GLUB (Hearts) Installation

Mieke Bal and Shahram Entekhabi

2004, 30:00 minutes, colour, English, German, Turkish, Russian, and Farsi w/ Eng. Subtitles


GLUB, Arabic for “hearts” names edible “seeds” – the stuff of the future, growth and change, movement and sustenance. Hearts connote the beating heart of a live culture, survival, affection, and excitement. In this film, it is the excitement, overruling complaints and problems, anxieties and xenophobia.

The mixed societies that have emerged from migration have benefited from migrants arrival. Cities have become heterogeneous ("colourful"), music and cinema have been spectacularly enriched. On the streets of Berlin, e.g. in Kreuzberg, the shells of seeds testify to the presence of migrant culture in contemporary European urban centres. Those traces of passing gestures are the “low” icons of migratory aesthetics. “Low”: inexpensive, modest, and thrown away as rubbish; “low” as unspectacular, democratic because available to all, and lying around on the once immaculate pavements. Aesthetic, though, because they mark the look of the city that, through these shells and the sociability of the people who left them after eating outside and together, has donned a visible aspect of diversity.

GLUB is presented here as a modest, barely visible “icon” of the aesthetic changes in everyday urban culture. Arab youngsters are often seen hanging around eating seeds. These have rather little taste, provide little nourishment, and have no hallucinogenic qualities. One migrant said they eat them to pass the time that stretches out so endlessly for the unemployed. Then it became a habit, then an appreciated tradition, incorporating (literally) a sense of family and community. It now characterizes the visual sight of migrant young men in European cities. More so, however, when European youngsters began to imitate the cool-looking habit. Identity dissolves, while contact is being established, not necessarily between persons but surely within the “look” of culture. Glub-eating young men of Arabic and German backgrounds testify to the permeability of cultural boundaries, hence, identities.

Rental and Sales

Single Screening Rental


Educational Purchase DVD (Bluray +$15)


5 Year Educational Streaming License, Digital File with DVD Circulation Copy


Gallery Exhibition and Installation, complete Media Request form for quote

Institutional Archival Acquisition, complete Media Request form for quote

Curators and programmers, please contact to receive a login and password to preview Vtape titles online.

Screening and exhibition rentals and archival acquisitions include public performance rights; educational purchases or licenses include rights for classroom screenings and library circulation. When placing an order the customer agrees to our general online terms and conditions. Payment (or a purchase order number) and a signed licensing agreement must be received before media can be shipped to the client.