Friday, May 24, 2024

Sonia Kacem at Selma Feriani Gallery – Tunis

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Judging by the title “Jelliz et Gestes(Zellij and Gesture), it’s simple to imagine that the point of interest of Sonia Kacem’s newest exhibition is zellij, the custom of enameled ceramic tiles related to the western Islamic world. And but the Swiss-Tunisian artist’s inquiry is extra crafty than that. Since Tunisia gained independence within the Nineteen Fifties, quite a few classically educated artists have devised methods to combine vernacular craft methods into their manufacturing course of. In doing so, they’ve checked all the suitable containers, addressing their place inside each the specificities of their native contexts and the larger modernist challenge. It isn’t stunning, then, that many modern artists proceed to see the attraction of pottery or weaving as instruments to handle their hybrid identities or cultural inheritance. What’s completely different this time? Is there extra to this exhibition than the outdated conflict of modernity and custom?

Jelliz et Gestes” is the end result of Kacem’s latest residency in Tunis, in addition to her ongoing data of specific visible components inside the city milieus, which she began in Cairo in 2019. From these observations, the artist compiled a lexicon of kinds, palettes, and supplies that she integrated into her personal visible language. Working along with Tunisian zellij masters, Kacem designed ten distinctive ceramic panels (all works 2023), every composed of ninety-six tiles. She hung these works atop vibrant geometries painted immediately on the wall. The titles of those murals—N (Astral: W8.28.34), Imprecise Horizontal (Astral: C4.45.51)_—_refer to distinct patterns and colour codes, offering glimpses into the artist’s peculiar taxonomies. Kacem thus fashions imaginative modes of diasporic expression, staging a visible rating during which a number of motifs, types, localitiesand creative traditions converge.

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