Alia Hamaoui's practice explores oscillating ideas between exoticism, Orientalism, tourism and cultural authenticity. She explores these notions from a 21st century post-digital angle, dissecting these ideas through technological and mass...
Alia Hamaoui's practice explores oscillating ideas between exoticism, Orientalism, tourism and cultural authenticity. She explores these notions from a 21st century post-digital angle, dissecting these ideas through technological and mass media consumer anecdotes that impregnate our relationship to desire. Presented with quasi-archeological tenor, artworks take the form of contemporary relics inspired by ancient reliefs and the cultural aesthetics of her childhood - a time spent split between Lebanon, France and England. Through these forms, objects conjure an auratic realism typically endued to museum artifacts and relics, gesturing toward the intimacy we feel with objects drawn from an imagined or symbolic past.
These concepts manifest themselves in hybrid objects evoking an osmosis of memory with image and a collusion of technical process with haptic forms. Crucial to Hamaoui’s work is a collapsed dichotomy of digital and physical. Her constructions are therefore hybrid and multi-lateral. They combine image and object through an amalgam of disparate craft techniques, made from fragments of sand, plaster, textiles, translucent waxes and soaps to create a visual language rich with antipodal aesthetics. The materiality, ranging from opaque to translucent, textured and smooth attempt to evoke a very sensual experience from the viewer, tapping into our deep sensory desires to connect with objects and disparate timeframes.
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