Finding history in the trash

In this exhibition, Ali Arkady transcends the boundaries between artistic mediums, combining video and photography with unexpected and mixed techniques. The scenography opens a way through these mediums. This path connects the different artistic practices that define Ali Arkady's work, always in this dynamic of superimposition. It’s also a path through time, it guides us chronologically through the memories and emotions of Ali Arkady. It’s an aesthetic path that makes space composed as a narrative. 

A few months ago, Ali Arkady discovered some monoliths stones, about a hundred years old, that the Beaux-Arts were planning to throw away. He was overwhelmed by these stones, the ages they had passed, the importance of their stories, all the culture and tradition they symbolize. At the group exhibition of the Mesiti workshop to which he is attached, he exposed the stones for the first time and showed his videos, having overlaid the stones and spread them throughout the gallery. After this first stage of deconstructing the classical use of a stone, he combines this discovery with another one: lithography. Invented by Aloys Senefelder, from 1796, in Germany, but definitively developed in the first years of the 19th century, lithography (from the Greek lithos, "stone" and graphein, "to write") is a printing technique that allows the creation and reproduction in multiple copies of a line executed with ink or pencil on a limestone. This technique reminds Ali Arkady of the printing of old newspapers and links his works to his background as a journalist.

In this exhibition, Ali Arkady transcends the boundaries between artistic mediums, combining video and photography with unexpected media and mixed techniques.
The scenography opens a passage through these mediums. This path connects the different artistic practices that define Ali Arkady's work, always in this dynamic of superimposition. It’s also a path through time, it guides us chronologically through the works and memories of Ali Arkady. It’s an aesthetic path that is put into a narrative. Space is composed here as a narrative.

Through his art, Ali seeks to tell stories, to transmit us what he has seen and heard. He wants to talk about the past, the present, the future. The choice of the stone as a support anchors of his work in a relationship with time. Specifically today, in the digital age, it gives a lasting dimension to his testimony. The superimposition of his photographs on these stones, puts in tension different periods and subjects. His works creates a relationship between these stories, these moments that were not meant to cross each other. Ali Arkady writes stories with these works and writes History in images. Photography etymologically means ​writing with light​. It transmits and leaves a timeless trace to his testimonies. He transmits and leaves a timeless trace to his testimony, drawing from the sources of the Euphrates and Tigers, clay and the first writings of the world. By bringing together the symbol of the stone - a monolith, which safeguards the keys to our existence, on which the first images were painted and the first laws were engraved - and the testimony of light through photography, naturally emancipating itself from the heaviness of the stone, Ali uses the very foundations of History to bring out his own.