Programm der A.M. Qattan Foundation zur Unterstützung palästinensischer Künstler. Ausstellung: Preisträger und Endauswahl. 6. Nov. - 27. Dez. 2018, AMQF Kulturzentrum, Ramallah.
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The Untranslatable Words of Love, 2018
Single channel video, 20’25”
This work stems from an experimental place: both visual and verbal languages are inconsistently ‘at stake’. Yet, despite the fact that the video is segmented into 4 chapters, it requires effort to follow its development––there is no desire to weave a coherent narrative. Each of the chapters feels as if it aspires to become a separate video work on its own. There are many distinguished characters that feature throughout the video, but two of them can be aptly considered protagonists: the hart (deer) and the blue heron. This is due to their recurring appearances and because of the dual role they play, simultaneously. Each is a captured object, or a mere character, but they are also witnesses to the chronicle of events. Formally, the work is influenced by Franz Kafka’s novella Metamorphosis from 1915. But it doesn’t consider metamorphosis as a state of physical transformation only, but rather as a means of physical movement between spaces and progression in time. The work also hankers to deliver a visual experience where the personal/private and the political/collective are firmly intertwined, and to challenge both the use and viewing of (still and moving) images and their (semantic) translations at the same time.
Alaa Abu Asad lives and works between the Netherlands and Palestine. He received a BFA from the Department of Photography at Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem, and his MA from the Dutch Art Institute (DAI), ArtEZ University of the Arts in Arnhem. Alaa’s work is focused on the image and its various uses and readings. His work has also featured in many exhibitions and events in cities around the world, including Aarau, Arnhem, Athens, Beirut, Berlin, Bethlehem, Biella, Brussels, Cairo, Haifa, Jerusalem, Limassol, London, Milan, Nazareth, New York City, Oslo, Ramallah, Rotterdam, Salvador de Bahia and Zurich.
© Video excerpt: Alaa Abu Asad