Sazmanab-Ab/Anbar presented the exhibition “At 11:08 March 14th, 2006” by the London-based artist Reza Aramesh.
The title was taken from an event on Tuesday, March 14th, 2006 when Israeli forces raided a Palestinian prison camp in a city of Jericho.
“At 11:08 March 14th, 2006,” brought together new works by Reza Aramesh, three of which were conceived specifically for this exhibition; a 16mm film made from 470 found reportage images titled not what was meant, a site-specific installation that consisted of a slide projection and large-scale black and white photographs.
“There are European literary precedents informing Reza Aramesh’s work that offer an insight into his subject matter and method. Taken together with his origins in the Middle East a fascinating convergence of influences emerges. The 20th-century existentialist writers Jean Genet and Albert Camus provide a schema of ideas that both concern the place of the outsider in society, detached from its moral norms but emotionally charged. Genet, whose writings describe the cloying stylisation of power in its most absurd extreme is the prisoner of the establishment whose celebration of society’s taboos sets him free. Camus, the Algerian interloper onto European territory, describes the individual as an onlooker, one who chronicles their own state of being in the context of others from whom they are disassociated. Thirdly, Bertolt Brecht, essentially the contemporary of Camus and Genet, who saw society as a manifestation of political values and placed an emphasis on the collective endeavour rather than the condition of the individual. These three iconic writers represent distinct but canonical moments in art and their threads weave together to a profound extent in Reza Aramesh’s works.”
Extract from the exhibition catalogue, by David Thorpe (David Thorp is an independent curator and founder of the Performance Studio)
Reza Aramesh was born in Iran and has lived abroad since he was a teenager. He completed his MA in Fine Arts at Goldsmiths University, London in 1997. He has exhibited worldwide including UK, France, China, USA and UAE. He has orchestrated a number of performances and exhibitions in established institutions including the Barbican Centre, Tate Britain and ICA, London. Other projects have been staged in public squares, nightclubs and industrial warehouses. Working in photography, sculpture, video and performance, Reza Aramesh’s profound understanding of the history of art, film and literature is ever present in his work. Mass media imagery, typically of recent wars and armed conflicts, becomes the source material for a wide range of works, all of which he titles Actions. From reportage images, Reza Aramesh singles out individual scenes of violence – journalistic snapshots taken in war zones – then in his artistic process intentionally removes everything but the essence of each image. In the curious way that each image of aggression resembles almost any other picture of a aggression, Reza Aramesh’s anonymous subjects become actors in his exploration of the mechanism of violence.
December 26, 2014 – January 22, 2015
Opening reception: Friday, December 26 – 3-10 PM