tours-france

Kader Attia

Centre de Création Contemporaine

The implications of Kader Attia’s installation Kasbah, 2009, extended well beyond the gallery’s bare concrete walls and low, unfinished ceilings. Occupying almost every inch of available floor space and requiring nimble footwork to traverse, this oppressive universe of rusty scrap-metal rooftops, which was dotted with makeshift antennae and strewn with vagrant tires, shoes, and bricks, rendered obsolete any picturesque connotations still elicited by the work’s title, the exotic-sounding name for a North African walled citadel. Instead, Attia, a son of Algerian immigrants who grew up in the banlieues, appropriated this potent symbol to convey the disenfranchised destitution in which a vast majority of today’s “wretched of the earth,” to use Frantz Fanon’s designation, still struggle to subsist.

The five works that made up the exhibition suggested that aesthetics partially participated in

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