press release

Opening: Friday, 26 October, 6–9pm

Nina Koidl and Henning Weidemann are pleased to announce the first solo exhibition of Fayçal Baghriche at Campagne Première.

Fayçal Baghriche's artistic practice is characterised by simple gestures. Drawing on fundamental principles of image rhetoric such as subtraction, inversion, and acceleration, he creates artworks that question the schema that organises human societies. Mixing photography, sculpture, collage and performance, his works are playful, anarchic and trigger thoughtful critical reaction.

The series "Family Friendly" consists of a collection of diptyques of images taken from international art magazines found in Dubai. In the UAE, like in many Muslim countries, images of nudity are prohibited in the public sphere and are hidden underneath hand-made ink marks. Baghriche has extracted an identical image from two different copies of the same magazine to produce a diptyque that shows the action of the hand on the magazine. Each image becomes unique. The artist is interested in the aesthetic value of these new objects, artworks made by people who are not artists.

The same applies to his series "Imperfections," pieces of glass salvaged in a picture framer‘s workshop. The framed glass pieces show the framer‘s hand-marked circles around defaults on the glasses which he means to use for his frames. Baghriche used these spontaneous marks to reconsider the gesture that generated the graphic form. This action shows how he values those things that others find uninteresting or invaluable and dispose of.

Akoah also raises the question of how a found object functions in a new context. The figure (h: 93cm) is the mold of a rescue dummy used in swimming pools for rescue training. Baghriche’s cast is made of the wax which normally disappears during the process of casting bronze. Seen in a new context and with the wax pipes, which are objects used in the intermediary process of casting, still in place the vacuous expression of the figure opens up a space of new evaluation and interpretation.

The artist‘s role as a collector of narratives and objects is highlighted in his work Souvenir, an illuminated terrestrial globe, which has been fitted with a motor and turns so fast that it is impossible to make out the contours of the continents and the demarcations of the countries. Baghriche transforms the public realm into a venue for startling transgressions, absurd scenarios, and minimalist actions tinged with humour.

Born in Skikda, Algeria, in 1972, Fayçal Baghriche studied at Villa Arson in Nice then moved to Paris, where he helped to create an artist’s residence (La Villa du Lavoir, since 2003) and a curatorial structure (Le Comissariat, since 2006). Recent solo exhibitions include Satellite, Dubai; The Delfina Foundation, London; Bielefelder Kunstverein, Germany; Contemporary Art Center "Le Quartier" Quimper, France; Galerie Air de Paris. Recent group exhibitions include the Gwangju Biennale; Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston; Art Dubai Projects; Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah; Musée d'art moderne de la ville de Paris; Museum of Contemporary Art, Bordeaux; and The Future of a Promise at the 54th Venice Biennale.

Faycal Baghriche
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