AIM fait appel aux acteurs culturels du Maghreb

February 7, 2015 § Leave a comment

La plateforme d’art contemporain Art in Maghreb (AIM) fait appel aux artistes, organisations et acteurs culturels du Maghreb (Maroc, Algérie, Tunisie) et sa diaspora afin d’en constituer une cartographie (à partir d’une base de données) et de les mettre en réseau. L’objectif étant de créer des projets en commun afin de donner plus de visibilité notamment aux artistes et promouvoir les différents événements et activités des acteurs culturels de cette région.

AiM Logo copyrights K Yezli

AiM logo © K Yezli

Si vous souhaitez rejoindre notre réseau, veuillez nous envoyer un email (pour une demande de formulaire) à l’adresse suivante :

Art in Maghreb (AIM) est une plateforme spécialisée dans l’art contemporain du Maghreb et de ses diasporas et opère à travers l’association AIM Project.

Facebook : artinmaghreb – Twitter : @ArtMaghreb
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East-West/West-East punctuates Qatar’s desert landscape

September 21, 2014 § Leave a comment

The Qatar museums authority commissioned ‘East-West/West-East’, a monumental sculptural installation by Richard Serra,situated in a desert at the Brouq Nature Reserve, approximately 60 kilometers from Doha.

Four steel plates punctuate the desert landscape, forming a close relationship to the topography of the site by crossing the peninsula of the protected park and connecting the waters of the gulf. The dark, towering beams rise to 14.7 meters and 16.7 meters above the ground, level to both each other and the gypsum plateaus on either side. Despite the vast distance that the plates span — over a kilometer from one end to the other — all four metal pillars can be viewed and explored from any point within the landscape.

The idea to work in the desert came from the Qataris. Serra recalled a conversation with Sheikha al-Mayassa during the construction of “7”: “She asked me, ‘Would you build a piece in the landscape?,’ and I said to her, ‘What landscape?,’ and she said, ‘The desert.’ ”

These gigantic steel plates are erie monoliths that wouldn’t be out of place in a film by Kubrick or Tarkovski.

Transcultural encounters

September 21, 2014 § Leave a comment

Transcultural encounters: Visualising France and the Maghreb in contemporary art by Siobhán Shilton (Manchester University Press, 2013) explores Franco-Maghrebi crossings in contemporary art, giving particular attention to performance, video, photography and installation.

The first book to focus on postcolonial approaches to art in France and the wider French-speaking world, this study examines new – and distinctively visual – means of presenting diversely transnational identities. Drawing on visual studies and postcolonial studies (both Francophone and Anglophone).

It is driven by the following key questions: how do works of art exploring Franco-Maghrebi identities utilise features specific to the media of performance, video, photography and installation? How do such works of art spur a re-thinking of both postcolonial and feminist issues and critical terms in an uneven globalised Francophone frame? How do they develop art historical debates concerning gender and corporeal representation in their response to issues arising from specific French and Maghrebi cultures? How do these works test the boundaries of established art genres, calling for new modalities of ‘reading’ transnational visual culture?

Here and Elsewhere

July 6, 2014 § Leave a comment

In July 2014, the New Museum will present “Here and Elsewhere,” a major exhibition of contemporary art from and about the Arab world. In the past ten years, the work of artists and cultural spaces in cities such as Amman, Beirut, Cairo, Dubai, Doha, Marrakesh, Ramallah, and Sharjah, among others, have established critical points of global access. However, despite a growing international interest in contemporary art from across North Africa and the Middle East, there have been few presentations of art from these regions in New York. “Here and Elsewhere” is the first museum-wide exhibition in New York to bring together more than forty artists from over twelve countries in the Arab world, many of whom live and work internationally.

Photo by Yto Barrada, N du mot Nation en arabe, Tanger (N of the Nation in Arabic, Tangier), 2003.

The exhibition borrows its title from a 1976 film-essay by French directors Jean-Luc Godard, Jean-Pierre Gorin, and Anne-Marie Miéville. Their film, Ici et ailleurs [Here and Elsewhere], was conceived as a pro-Palestinian documentary, but developed into a complex reflection on the ethics of representation and the status of images as instruments of political consciousness.

Taking inspiration from Godard, Gorin, and Miéville’s film—which has had a strong impact on an entire generation of artists in various Arab countries—the exhibition pays particular attention to the position and role of the artist in the face of historical events. Through different methodologies, an unconventional form of lyrical documentary and personal reportage emerges in works in which the artist is vested with the responsibility of revising dominant historical narratives. Other artists in the exhibition undertake experimental approaches to archival material, rewriting personal and collective traumas, and weaving fragments both real and imagined into their work. For others, traditional mediums like painting, drawing, and sculpture record subtle and intimate shifts in awareness, using images as tools for self-discovery, chronicles of current events, or registers of personal histories.

A reflection on what is at stake in the act of representation characterizes many of the works in the exhibition, as many artists reconsider the task of witnessing and chronicling social and political changes. In addition, a number of pieces initiate a reflection on images as sites of conflict or spaces of intimacy, while others develop a critique of media representation and propaganda.

In keeping with the New Museum’s dedication to showcasing the most engaging work from different parts of the world, “Here and Elsewhere” joins a series of New Museum exhibitions that have introduced urgent questions and new aesthetics to New York audiences.

Following the critical discussions that have animated contemporary art in recent years, “Here and Elsewhere” does not propose a fixed definition of Arab art or a distinctive regional style. With the renegotiation of location and perspective evoked in the exhibition’s title, the show calls attention to specific cities and art scenes while emphasizing the importance of international dialogues that extend beyond the Arab world. Further, the exhibition illuminates similar insights and affinities as well as dramatic differences, revealing multiple social and aesthetic landscapes rather than a fictional sense of unity.

Combining pivotal and under-recognized figures with younger and midcareer artists, “Here and Elsewhere” works against the notion of the Arab world as a homogenous or cohesive entity. Through the original and individualized practices of this multigenerational constellation of artists, the exhibition highlights works that often have conceptual or aesthetic roots in the Arab world, yet extend well beyond. Emerging from the works of a particularly strong and diverse group of artists are less the contours of an “imagined geography”—to use the words of Edward Said—than new critical attitudes toward art and images that encourage us to look “elsewhere” in order to understand our “here.”

Including the following artists: Mustapha Akrim (MA), Kader Attia (DZ), Yto Barrada (MA), Fakhri El Ghezal (TUN), Bouchra Khalili (MA), Selma and Sofiane Ouissi (TUN), Mohamed Larbi Rahali (MA).

With a curatorial project of archival materials and artworks by Ala Younis featuring (among others): Neïl Beloufa (DZ), Mohssin Harraki (MA), Amina Menia (DZ).

And many more artists across the Middle East.

Source: The New Museum (NYC)

>>> An in-depth look at the role and impact of contemporary art in the Arab world…

Young Algerian Artists (YAA)

November 17, 2013 § Leave a comment


YAA is not only an abbreviation for Young Algerian Artists (a humoristic reference to the YBAs) but it is also an onomatopoeia for an exclamation that might be interpreted in a variety of ways via the themes presented in the different works: joy, anger, puzzlement, etc. The aim here was to bring together young Algerian artists who draw inspiration from their immediate reality and surroundings while still reflecting on what’s happening on a global scale. Sadek Rahim, Walid Bouchouchi, Sadek Lamri, Nawel Louerrad and Amina Zoubir, five artists who live and work primarily in Algeria, raise in different ways issues that are related to contemporary Algerian society that might have a political angle and that can be a comment on the media, both at the local and global levels.

Burning Dreams by Sadek Rahim

Burning Dreams by Sadek Rahim

Sadek Rahim already has some experience as a visual artist, having exhibited at the Musée d’art Moderne et Contemporain in Algiers (MAMA) and as co-curator for the Biennale of Contemporary Art in Oran. He obtained his Master in Fine Art in 2003 from Saint Martins College of Art in London after studying in Beirut (Lebanon). In Burning Dreams, he gives an ironic re-interpretation of clandestine immigration using references to the legendary story of the flying carpet, in this case across the Mediterranean sea.

Walid Bouchouchi is completing his Master in Fine Art in Algiers, where he’s studying ghaphic design and photography. He presents a series of colour photographs entitled Printemps – Vu à la télé (Spring -seen on TV), a satirical depiction of various events of the overmediatised Arab spring. He is subversive in his use of the figure of the young revolutionary brandishing with conviction his laptop showing his Facebook page.

Walid Bouchouchi (left) installing his series of photographs - Spring , Seen on TV.

Walid Bouchouchi (left) installing his series of photographs – Spring , Seen on TV.

Sadek Lamri has a degree from the School of Fine Art in Mostaganem (Algeria) and specialises in painting and drawing. He shows young people, one finds in the big cities of the world, whom he believes to be lost to themselves or lost in society, but avoid being judgemental. Lassitude, the painting he is exhibiting here, shows a man in a hood who has turned his back to us and faces a wall or a world without exit: a figure of disillusion.

Nawel Louerrad, after obtaining her degree in architecture in Algeria, studied scenography and theatre in France. In 2012, she published her first graphic novel Les Vêpres Algériennnes, in which she raised sensitive issues related to Algerian history and identity. This was followed by Bach to black, which has been published in October, featuring a turtle as the main character. Nawel draws compulsivly purely for the sake of drawing and presents here a series of drawings and sketches in black and white, accompanied by texts in French and Arabic from her notebooks.

Drawing by Nawel Louerrad
Drawing by Nawel Louerrad

Amina Zoubir, a visual and video artist, has a Master in new media (theory and practice) from the University of Paris 8 and a Fine Art degree from Algiers. She is doing her doctoral research at the AIAC (Arts des Images, Art Contemporain) at the University of Paris 8 and questions gender issues and the role of women in the Arab world. In 2012, she presented performative actions in Algiers’ urban areas entitled Prends ta place for the webdocumentary Un été à Alger.

Katia Yezli, who’s curating this exhibition, studied Fine Art at the Chelsea College of Art (BA Hons) in London and photography at the University of Oregon in the US. Her recent thesis, as part of her Master in Fine Art at the University of Panthéon Sorbonne in Paris, explores the relationships between art and socio-politics, with a strong interest in artists from the Arab world.

This exhibition is part of Festival Algérie en Mouvement (From 12 to 16 Nov) which aims to present Algeria and its youth in a different light, and to build bridges between civil societies on both sides of the Mediterranean.

Walk the streets of the Casbah

October 11, 2013 § Leave a comment

Sketches of Algiers 1, a new site-specific installation by Algerian artist Amina Menia at 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair (Somerset House, London, 15th-20th October 2013). In this immersive installation, viewers are invited to walk the sloping streets of the historic Casbah and the picturesque alleys of this emblematic neighbourhood in the city of Algiers. By deconstructing the cinematic codes used by filmmaker Julien Duvivier in the studios of legendary film noir Pépé le Moko, Menia’s settings, mise-en-scène, lighting and props offer a fictional visit, uncovering little-known aspects of this unique architectural vernacular. The piece also points at the conventions developed by colonial cinema and confront what was once the native neighbourhood of French colonial Algiers with its now-threatened heritage.

Amina Menia, Sketches of Algiers 1, 2013. Sketch on still from the film Pépé le Moko, Julien Duvivier, 1937 © Amina Menia

Amina Menia, Sketches of Algiers 1, 2013. Sketch on still from the film Pépé le Moko, Julien Duvivier, 1937 © Amina Menia

Sketches of Algiers 1 was commissioned by aria and curated by curator Yasmina Reggad.

About artist Amina Menia
Amina Menia lives and works in Algiers. Her work questions the relationship between architectural and historical spaces, and challenges conventional notions around the exhibition space. Her artworks are a crossover of sculpture and installation, triggering interaction from onlookers with socio-spatial configurations. Amina has showed her work both nationally and internationally, including at the Museum of Modern Art in Algiers, Cornerhouse in Manchester, Museum of Contemporary Art in Leon, Royal Hibernian Academy in Dublin, National Museum of Carthage in Tunis, Sharjah Bienniale in the UAE and Museum of Contemporary Art in Marseille.

About aria (artist residency in algiers)
aria was founded by artist Zineb Sedira in 2011. aria strives to develop cross-border dialogues as well as expanding a dynamic network across diverse international art communities within and beyond Algeria. Through residency, commissioning and exhibitions programmes, aria provides opportunities for emerging and established artists from North Africa and across the world to conduct artistic and cultural research and production. aria collaborates and partners with other institutions and exhibition spaces to give more exposure to Algerian artists and to project a positive awareness and visibility of Algeria and its surroundings to global audiences.

>> Version française

aria (artist residency in algiers) présente Sketches of Algiers 1 de l’artiste Amina Menia, sous le commissariat de Yasmina Reggad.

Promenez-vous dans les rues de la Casbah avec l’artiste Amina Menia à l’occasion de sa première exposition personnelle à Londres à la 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair (Somerset House, Londres, 15-20 Octobre). Cette installation in situ plonge le spectateur dans les ruelles escarpées et sinueuses de la Casbah historique, et nous invite à marcher dans les allées pittoresques de ce quartier emblématique de la ville d’Alger. En déconstruisant les codes cinématographiques utilisés en studio par le réalisateur Julien Duvivier dans le légendaire film noir Pépé le Moko, à leur tour, les décors, mise en scène, lumière et accessoires de Menia nous offrent une visite fictive, dévoilant ainsi des aspects méconnus de cette architecture vernaculaire algérienne. Cette oeuvre met également en lumière les conventions développées par le cinéma colonial et confronte le passé de ce qui fut le quartier autochtone de l’Algérie française coloniale avec le présent de ce patrimoine menacé.


From London Bridge (Arizona) to Sheerness (Canada)

September 8, 2013 § Leave a comment

British artist Layla Curtis has created an alternative map of the Thames. Section 1: From London Bridge, Arizona to Salt Island, British Virgin Islands.

This ten-part collage, which is constructed by cutting and pasting locations from existing international maps and re-constructing them to form the familiar outline of the Thames, is available as a free download for the duration of the festival.

Focusing on researching the etymology of place names along the river’s shores and tracing their global namesakes, she has created an artwork that presents new geographical fictions as well as reflecting the history and far-reaching influence of the Thames.

Image: The Thames (Section 1: From London Bridge, Arizona to Salt Island, British Virgin Islands), collaged maps, 2013, by Layla Curtis

Image: The Thames (Section 1: From London Bridge, Arizona to Salt Island, British Virgin Islands), collaged maps, 2013, by Layla Curtis

Many historic voyages of discovery have set sail from the Thames including Martin Frobisher’s 1576 search for the Northwest Passage. This part of the river was also the main departure point for the English colonisation of North America and the West Indies – many of the key protagonists, destinations, ships, and trade resulting from these voyages are represented by places bearing their names.

>> Exhibited Sunday 18 August – Sunday 15 September on boards on the riverside walkways by The London Studios west of Gabriel’s Wharf, in front of Tate Modern and by Tower Bridge, in London.

>>> Cartographie, toponymie et histoire

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