Contributor Bios

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Nidhal Chemekh

Nidhal Chamekh was born in 1985 in Dahmani (Tunisia) and graduated at the School of Fine Arts in Tunis and in Paris. The neighborhoods of Tunis where he grew up and persecution of his activist family activist have a profound impact on his art where he draws together spaces and cultures. Nidhal’s work could be considered as a tool to « sample » the chaos of our history. This would in fact create plans that can operate certain « cuts of chaos » to constitute a kind of social and cultural archaeology to make significant historical complexity of the images. It is also to present a way of seeing social temporality and collect in a given space visual dislocation from reality. Nidhal is committed to analyze our generation with a visual, yet experimental, language. His creations present a possible interpretation of our time, in the intersection between a biographical microcosm and a political framework, between personal experience and history, between the event and the archive. From design to installation to photography and video, Nidhal Chamekh fragments and dissects through his works the very constitution of our contemporary identity. Within his rigor and his full commitment, the artist’s language challenges history and politics taken in their broadest meaning. Starting with his first series of drawings « De quoi rêvent les martyrs » Nidhal Chamekh plays a fragmentary research and he conveys an atmosphere between things, swinging between the experience and the violence of the individual representation. He represents an imperceptible space between a silent violence mirroring an intimate experience of trauma. But in this purely sensory experience, the viewer becomes the subject and he acquires the perspective of the abyss, the fragments of memory. The world becomes smaller yet universal at the same time. In particular drawing can be considered like the beginning of his discourse. Drawing here is like a discrete layer behind the paint never disappeared or behind the sculpture, video, installation never forgotten. Actually, there is always a preparatory drawing for artistic thing. So we can say that drawing is a beginning but never an end. And the beginning is exactly where Nidhal Chamekh wants to go. What happens in the mind of a human being to go and venture alongside death, into a desired destiny? « We are beings to the end » states Martin Heidegger. Yet the fate of a human life is summed up in an attempt to forget this event. These drawings represent a return to our beginning, the dream of a life that has become the dream of death: Nidhal Chamekh epitomizes an artistic awareness in the search for a constitutive violence crossing the different dimensions, from the intimate to the political one. Nidhal Chamekh’s artworks were shown in the 56th Venice Biennale, 11th Dakar Biennial, The Hood museum of Art, Art Basel Hong Kong…etc. His work has been exhibited at the 56th Venice Biennale, 11th Dakar Biennial, The Hood museum of Art, Art Basel Hong Kong, 1:54 African Art Fair, National Centre for Living Art (Tunis), the Arab World Institute, Primo Marella gallery…

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