The exhibition Répare Reprise* provides a platform for artists from the Middle East and Africa, most of whom have experienced exile and who live today in Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq, Iran, the Golan Heights, DRC Congo, Ethiopia, Algeria, Tunisia and France. Not only is the exhibition a prolongation of the mission of the Portes Ouvertes sur l’Art association, it is also totally in phase with the very nature of the Cité internationale des arts’ project, which has been a place of hospitality and welcome for international artists in residence since 1965. Not concerned with the theme of migration as such, or of bearing witness, the artists gathered here are actually endeavouring, in this fragmented world, to recompose political ideas and ideals and repair all things related to the personal domain. These expressions of personal life start in the home, a place of refuge, where the artists reinterpret objects and practices associated with domesticity (sewing, weaving, embroidery) and go on to encompass larger spaces such as public archives, which they patiently strip of their contents and decolonise, or maps, as they chart out territories scarred by war. These artists collect and transform composite objects, doubles of psyches in the process of reconstruction, hollowing them out or covering them the tenacious images of a colonial past and raising falsely figurative monuments to memories that have been left unspoken.
The recent or previously unseen works brought together in Répare Reprise cover different disciplines: sculpture, video installation, painting, engraving, textile art and photography. They take the visitor to visit the ruins, the remains of repression and trauma and open out onto the poetic unravelling or salvatory patching up of flags, linen, newspaper, whereas in the field of moving images, they take back possession of beloved landscapes.
The artworks on show at the exhibition are living objects that often belong to series in perpetual production, undoubtedly because the repeated gesture circumscribes the shock wave and repairs the stolen stories and images, which still return when night falls.
The exhibition is accompanied by a cycle of get-togethers with the artists at the Cité internationale des arts, and other get-togethers will also be available online.
Participating artists: Majd Abdel Hamid, Azza Abo Rebieh, Kader Attia, Sammy Baloji, Yacob Bizuneh, Bady Dalloul, Khaled Dawwa, Kholod Hawash, Katia Kameli, Farah Khelil, Randa Maddah, Sara Ouhaddou, RAMO, Maha Yammine Most of the guest artists have previously been in residency or are currently in residency at the Cité internationale des arts.
*In Arabic, it is pronounced "tafkik" and means to "deconstruct, decompose and analyse".