From Thursday, May 18, 2017 to Saturday, July 29, 2017.
The work of Alia Farid is a confluence experiences and landscapes that have shaped her perception, namely in relation to Kuwait and Puerto Rico and their respective positions vis-à-vis other territories. Her work is expressed through videos, spatial installations, drawings and other mediums.
For her first solo exhibition in Paris, Between Dig and Display, Alia Farid interprets a selection of documentation images found in the storage basement of the never completed Kuwait National Museum. The disparate images, a mixture of ancient and recent artifacts, demonstrate a society’s struggle to coherently articulate its own history: the severed head of a clay figurine, wooden sandals, pearl sieves, broken glass, potsherds, garments, a camel head trapping, date palms, the capital of a column and walls of a nearby excavated fort, to name but a few. In some of the images, neither site nor object is apparent. In others, a black and white rod set alongside unearthed matter provides viewers a sense of scale. Not far from the images, piles of plastic bags filled with fragments of previous civilizations lie in wait, unearthed and yet un-exposed. Stranded between archeological site and the museum, like a spirit caught between worlds, the images and objects residing in the basement of the Kuwait National Museum are less a record of the nation’s aspirations than evidence of its conflicting values. What is the meaning of display in an aniconic society? Seemingly disjointed, the objects in this exhibition assemble a precarious universe that oscillates between record and invention.
Born in Kuwait, 1985. Lives and works in Kuwait and Puerto Rico.
Alia Farid (b. 1985) works at the intersection of art and architecture. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from La Escuela de Artes Plásticas de Puerto Rico (Viejo San Juan), a Master of Science in Visual Studies from the Visual Arts Program at MIT (Cambridge, MA), and a Master of Arts in Museum Studies and Critical Theory from the Programa d’Estudis Independents at MACBA (Barcelona).
I began making work somewhere in between art, architecture, and urban anthropology. Today I’m still interested in these areas, but with a much more focused point in telling how informal networks are forced to make up for lack of formal structure, as one of the things I value most is the subversive quality of work that goes unnoticed.