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Malmö Konsthall

S:t Johannesgatan 1, 200 10 Malmö

MAIL: info.konsthall@malmo.se

TLF: +46 40-34 12 86

WEB: konsthall.malmo.se

Alle dage 11-17, Onsdag 11-21


Leila Alaoui

25.09.2016 - 16.10.2016


Crossings explores the experience of sub-Saharan migrants who embark on the perilous journey to reach the elusive shores of Europe. The three-screen video installation focuses on the collective trauma provoked by the embodied experience of crossing boundaries and becoming a fragile community in a new habitat. While exploring the experiential textures of psychological and physical transition, the installation also gestures towards the concept of Europe as a problematic utopia in the African imagination. 

Following weeks of research as a participant observer among migrant communities in Morocco, Leila Alaoui nurtured the idea of an immersive audiovisual experience through which to share personal stories of migration and re-enact the disturbing sensations of the journey. Coming from a documentary photography background she was interested in the capacity of contemporary video art to explore the boundaries of traditional storytelling while avoiding clichés of victimization.

Alaoui captures already in No Pasara, a project commissioned by the European Union in 2008, the lives of young Moroccans, who dream of a better future on the other side of the Mediterranean. The photographs bear witness to their realities as well as their illusions. In reaction to Europe’s policies to tighten its borders, a new terminology emerged to express a symbolic resistance to all laws depriving the freedom to migrate. “Hrag” (to burn) and “Harragas” (the burners) have become common codes among a desperate youth willing to sacrifice everything to reach the shores of Europe. In their attempts “to burn” the border, many end up burning their identities, their past and sometimes their lives.

Opening Gallery Night Saturday September 24, 6–12 p.m.
Presentation of MAFF's programme and live music at 7.30 p.m.

Leila Alaoui (1982–2016), French-Moroccan photographer and video artist. Born in Paris, she studied photography at the City University of New York before spending time in Morocco and Lebanon. Her work explores the construction of identity and cultural diversity, often through the prism of the migration stories that intersect the contemporary Mediterranean. Exhibitions include among others the Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris (2014); Art Dubai (2015); the Maison Européenne de la Photographie, Paris (2015) and Galleria Continua, Les Moulins (2016).

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