IT’S DANGEROUS TO GO ALONE! TAKE THIS / Bassam Issa (IE), Photo: tom mesic


Bassam Issa (IE)

New Animation Art

Award of Distinction

IT’S DANGEROUS TO GO ALONE! TAKE THIS, a 30-minute-long CGI film, is the second part of an imaginary video game, which follows an ambiguous “hero” undergoing numerous metamorphoses. The film challenges the amped-up constructed masculinity that video game avatars embody as well as the associated idealistic connotations of progress, growth, and transformation. Rather than just embracing the potential of computer-animated worlds, the film inverts their “logic” and questions their highly politicized and constructed nature.

External worlds merge with internal ones, the body’s selfhood untangles from surface, and emotions flood and disintegrate. Dream eroticism is blended with body horror, and scenes of destruction and decay juxtapose against scenes of resilience and rebirth. Bassam builds a world in which selfhood and queer possibility intersect, where multiple “glitches” occur within the body and gender, and binaries begin to break down. These glitches, or forms of discontent and unraveling, push and challenge preconceived narratives and habitual perceptions of masculinity, taking viewers through a spellbinding journey of metamorphosis and fluidity.

Jury Statement

Luring us into a fantastical dreamscape, Bassam Issa’s CGI film IT’S DANGEROUS TO GO ALONE! TAKE THIS embraces the shape-shifting potential and seduction of computer-animation. The film revolves around a ‘hero’ undertaking an uneasy and dangerous journey through various realms. In IT’S DANGEROUS TO GO ALONE! TAKE THIS, Bassam Issa has built a world of subtle storytelling filled with hyper-synthetic visuals. In this world, journeys seemingly never end, and preconceived narratives and habitual perceptions of masculinity are pushed and challenged. Operating in the gap between the fantasy and reality, Bassam Issa.

Excerpt from the jury statement


Written, directed and animated by Bassam Issa. Commissioned by the Douglas Hyde Gallery. Supported by the Arts Council of Ireland.

Bassam Issa (IE)

Bassam Issa works across digital animation, painting, sculpture and textiles creating visions of resistance, transformation, and queer possibility. Recent solo exhibitions include: IT’S DANGEROUS TO GO ALONE! TAKE THIS at The Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin (2022), I AM ERROR at Gasworks, London (2021), and De La Warr Pavilion, Sussex (2022). Recent group exhibitions include Queer Embodiment and Social Fabric at the Irish Museum of Modern Art (2021-2022), LIAF Biennale, Lofoten, Norway (2022) and Transmediale, Berlin (2021). Recent screenings include the Barbican, London (2022), EX-IS, South Korea (2021), and Jeu de Paume, Paris (2021).