London Art Fair 2016 | Open Gallery
20-24 January 2016
Within the Art Projects space of The London Art Fair, Open Gallery showcased Jasmina Metwaly’s video painting series - Remarks on Medan (Tahrir Version), 2011.
Comprising of video installations, projected across three walls, the work captures twelve scenes depicting the Egyptian Revolution in 2011. Unlike sensationalised reportage from the time, Metwaly’s camera remains motionless as an impartial observer. Whilst changes unfold, her camera finds patterns and details otherwise concealed within the chaos. With an ever-growing proliferation of images and videos portraying scenes of international unrest in the media; Metwaly’s reticent approach, devoid of any sound, channels another way of looking. The stationary camera is an unnatural act which clashes with the constant movement of the world around it. It is in the futility of this artistic challenge that the inevitability of change is exposed.
The title of the work serves as a poetic bridge into the subject matter of the videos. Remarks are comments or observations and Medan means a town square or battlefield. The work mediates on the dual meaning of Medan and the dichotomy between what each of these respective spaces denote, revealing the transition from square to battlefield.
Showcasing this tableau of Metwaly’s video paintings follows an installation with her long-term collaborator Philip Rizk at the Deutsche Pavilion, 56th Venice Biennale, Italy (2015). Although both exhibitions explore the themes of transitory sites and the political agency of mark making, Open Gallery has the rare opportunity to share this earlier solo series of video painting works with the public in the UK
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