Please stop this sun
Installation with poster, frame and skin lightening cream
91 x 61 cm
2014

















In Between gives context to the complexity of these relations and the ways artists are willing to risk crossing visible and invisible lines drawn by norms. Soufiane Ababri' s works attempt to highlight the process of loss of an authentic time and space for original ritual artefacts by studying classifications of some private collections of African art in Europe. Through the use of the document (exhibition catalogs, catalogs of auctions), there is a domination and violence at stake with the transformation of the perception of these artisans, manufacturers of objects; whose use according to their creations disappears in favor of a status symbol multiplied by the printing machines and technology. It’s just as if the institution’s secretary’s printer was stolen by the artist who made copies after copies of the archival image in question. In the exhibition space is presented a corpus of works in two acts. The first one refers to tradition and is composed of a group of black and white reproductions of a Dogon statue from Mali in West Africa, representing an ancestor. Some of these wooden sculptures were studied after ethnological missions in Mali mostly in the 1930s. The statue, originally symbolizing the protection of the ancestor, gets absorbed by this act of copying with machines, thus highlighting the inauthenticity of a visual recyclage that reminds us of folklore. There is a similar question at stake in the image of the revolutionary whose specificity gets absorbed by the massification of western culture. A bit further Soufiane Ababri is presenting a second act in reference to the figure of Malcolm X represented on a poster purchased on Ebay, that any teenager could hang in his bedroom next to his computer. Ababri partially shows the poster, hiding intentionally some of the potentialities of the hero's image. From the ritual purpose of African statues to their representation, is there a loss of the original at stake? This raises the question of a distinction between "nature" and "culture" which is also inherent in the Agency archive. Ababri seeks to parasitize the hegemony of these representations by allowing the visitor to doubt about what we see and thus escape any fixed form or pattern.