usama (dot) alshaibi (at) gmail (dot) com


Master of Fine Arts, University of Colorado, Film Studies, Boulder, CO
Bachelor of Arts, Columbia College, Film and Video, Chicago, IL

Teaching Experience

Lecturer, University of Colorado Boulder, CO, 2019–
Visiting Assistant Professor, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, 2017–
Visiting Assistant Professor, University of Colorado Boulder, CO, 2018–2019
Special Instructor, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, 2015–2017
Visiting Lecturer, University of Colorado Boulder, CO, 2015–2016
Adjunct Professor, Columbia College, Chicago, IL, 2006–2007

Work Experience

Co-Owner, Artvamp LLC, production studio, 2005-
Radio Host/Producer, Vocalo, 89.5 FM, Chicago Public Radio, 2007–2009
Digital Archivist, Chicago History Museum, Chicago, IL, 1998–2007


Arab Fund for Arts and Culture, 2016
The Center for Asian-American Media Grant, 2013
The Illinois Humanities Council Grant, 2012
John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Award, 2011
Best Feature Film, Boston Underground Film Festival, 2011
Playboy Foundation Grant for Documentary Film, 2010
Kartemquin Films Diversity Fellowship, 2009
Best Documentary Feature, Chicago Underground Film Festival, 2006
Tribeca All Access Creative Promise Award, 2005
Creative Capital Foundation for the Arts Grant, 2005

Television Broadcast

American Arab, broadcast on American ReFramed  (World Channel on PBS) February and September, 2016; Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) May-December 2015; Japan Broadcasting Corporation, Nippon Hoso Kyokai (NHK) September, 2015 and VGTV in Norway, 2015

Arab American Stories, PBS series produced by Detroit Public Television, directed “Elkader” and “Mother Mosque” segments, broadcast nationally on public television stations June-December, 2012

Nice Bombs, Sundance Channel, broadcast on March 19, 2008-2009


Nice Bombs, Pioneer Theater, New York City, 2007
Nice Bombs, Gene Siskel Film Center, Chicago, 2007

DVD releases

American Arab, feature film with extras, Kartemquin Films, 2014
Profane, feature film with extra footage, Artvamp & MVD,  2012
Nice Bombs, documentary with shorts and extra footage, Artvamp, 2009
Solar Anus Cinema, Alshaibi short film collection, Artvamp, 2009
Dream of Samarra, short film, A Rebours, Cinema Abattoir, 2008
Hold My Scissors, music videoExperiments in Terror 2, Other Cinema, 2007
Ass, short film, L’érotisme, Cinema Abattoir, 2007
Convulsion Expulsion, short film,  Incarnation, Cinema Abattoir, 2007
Allahu Akbar, short filmResistance[s]: Experimental films from the Middle East, lowave, 2006
Dance Habibi Dance, short film, Movieside Film Festival, 2006
Muhammad and Jane, feature film with short films, Artvamp, 2003

Selected Bibliography

Jack Sargeant, Flesh and Excess: On Underground Film, Amok Press, 2015
Angele Ellis, (Un) hyphenated Complexities?” Al-Jadid Magazine, Vol. 19, No. 69, 2015
Mohamed Moussa, “We Wrote our Wills Before Going to Iraq” Al Jazeera, July 13, 2014
Louis Cainkar, Homeland Insecurity, Russell Sage Foundation, 2009
Ronnie Scheib, Nice Bombs review, Variety, July 10, 2007
Bruce Bennet, “Going Home to Understand War” New York Sun, July 11, 2007
Michael Phillips, “Filmmaker visits his native Iraq” Chicago Tribune, August 11, 2006
Studs Terkel, Hope Dies Last, The New Press, 2003 

Media Appearances

Colorado Public Radio, Colorado Matters, February 23, 2016
Chicago Public Radio, WBEZ Worldview, interview with Jerome McDonnell, February 9, 2016
Community Public Radio, KGNU News, Boulder, interview with Maeve Conran, February 9, 2016
Radio Islam, WCEV Chicago, interview with Janaan Hashim, February 6, 2016
WGN Morning News, television interview, August 17, 2006
Chicago Tonight, PBS WTTW 11, television interview with Phil Ponce, August 15, 2006

Selected Screenings (1999-2018)

Filmmakers Unite group show, Roxie Theater San Francisco, 2018
Mizna Arab Film Festival: Experimental Arab Film, 2018
Aurora Picture Show’s Extremely Shorts Film Festival, Texas, 2018
DOK Leipzig, Germany, 2017
ACT Human Rights Film Festival, 2016
Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur Switzerland, 2015
The 15th United Nations Association Monterey Bay International Film Festival, 2014
Arab Film Festival, San Francisco, 2014
Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, 2014
International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA), 2013
Chicago Underground Film Festival, 2011
Boston Underground Film Festival, Boston, 2011
Sexy International Film Festival, Melbourne, Australia, 2010
Kunstfilmtag in Düsseldorf, Germany, 2010
Pacific Cinematheque, Vancouver,  2010
The National Museum, Performance Intermedia, Poland, 2010
BUTFF in Netherlands, 2009
Extrapool in Nijmegen, Netherlands, 2009
Printers’ Ball, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, 2008
New Filmmakers, Anthology Film Archive, New York City, 2008
Pioneer Theater & Gene Siskel Film Center, Nice Bombs Theatrical Release, 2007
New York Underground Film Festival, Anthology Film Center, 2007
Chicago Underground Film Festival, 2006
Coding: Decoding: Nikolaj, Copenhagen Contemporary Art Center, 2006
Gene Siskel Film Center, Chicago, 2004
The 8th Rencontres Internationales Paris, Berlin, 2004
Lausanne Underground Film & Music Festival, Switzerland, 2004
Channel 83 festival of media, Florence, Italy, 2004
Select Media Festival: Regime Change For US Tour, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Paris, Chicago, 2003
Cinema of Transgression Retrospective, Pioneer Theater, New York, 2003
eKsperim[E]nt3 Film Festival, Manila, Philippines, 2003
Microcinema International, Paris, Mexico City, New York City, San Francisco, 2002
Coney Island Short Film Festival, New York, 2002
Microcinefest, Baltimore; 2002
Melbourne Underground Film Festival, Australia, 2002
Featured Director; Brighton Cinematheque, England, 2002
Pink Bubble Bath: The Sexy Film Festival, San Francisco, CA, 2002
Chamber of Pop Culture, Horse Hospital, London, England, 2001
Featured Director: Light Plays Tricks Short Film Festival, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, 2001
Museum of Contemporary Art, Summer Solstice, Chicago, 2001
Digital Talkies, New Delhi, India, 2001
Boston Underground Film Festival, 2001
Aurora Picture Show, Houston, TX, 2000
Eyeball Music Showcase, Athens, Georgia, 2000
Euro Underground Film Festival, Krakow, Poland, 2000
New York Underground Film Festival, 2000
Chicago Underground Film Festival, 1999

Selected Exhibitions

Untitled (Atrocity Exhibitions), Sydney, Australia, August 21, 2012
RESISTANCE[S], Third Guangzhou Triennial, China, September 9 – November 15, 2008
Printers’ Ball, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago August, 2008
This Is Only Temporary, Above Crater, Chicago, Group Show, 2008
Visions of Discord, Group Show (paintings, video) Co-Prosperity Sphere, Chicago, February, 2008
Coding: Decoding, Nikolaj Contemporary Art Center, Copenhagen, 2006
It’s Not The Bullet That Thrills, It’s The Hole, F.I.N Arts, New York City, July 2003
Pawn, G’factor Studio, with Kristie, Chicago, IL, May 2002
Plan B, group show and performance, Chicago IL, 1998
University of Iowa, Checkered Space, solo exhibition, Iowa City, IA, 1991

Curatorial Position

Juror, ACT Human Rights Film Festival, Colorado State University, 2017-present
Juror, 30th Annual Big Muddy Film Festival, Carbondale, IL, 2008
Program Director, The Z Film Festival, Chicago, 2000-2005
Juror, Community Arts Assistance Program (CAAP), Chicago, 2005
Juror, 72 Hour Feature Project; Gene Siskel Film Center, Chicago, 2003
Juror, eKsperim[E]nt3 Film Festival, Manila, Philippines, 2003
Curator, Projections in Heaven, Heaven Gallery, Chicago, 2001
Co-Director, Undershorts Film Festival, The Music Box Theatre, Chicago, 1999

Archival: Forced Artist Statement (2012)