Sadik Kwaish Alfraji, at the Naves del Matadero in September
The Iraqi artist is returning to Madrid with “We Scream, but Nothing
Changes,” after having held an exhibition at Casa Árabe from December
2018 through March 2019.
September 09, 2019
Sadik Kwaish Alfraji is one of the great contemporary artists of the Iraqi diaspora, and a large part of his work deals with the vulnerability of human existence, speaking of loss, exile, fragmentation and displacement.
He earned his degree at the Baghdad Academy of Fine Arts in 1987 and an advanced diploma in graphic design at the CHK Constantijn Huygens Center in the Netherlands in 2000. Educated as a painter and etching and engraving artist, he has also authored artist books and audiovisual animations that can be viewed on Vimeo. Alfraji has exhibited his work internationally, and it now forms part of both public and private collections, including the British Museum, Mathaf in Doha, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Houston Fine Arts Museum and the Barjeel Art Foundation. Alfraji was commissioned to complete one of his latest works for the Iraq Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale. That very same installation was presented at the Casa Árabe exhibition in Madrid titled Dark Is the Tone of My History during the first quarter of 2019.
The color black which predominates throughout all of his work is not used for aesthetic purposes but instead is closely linked to his life in Iraq. As cultural agent Mayssa Fattouh explains it: “Wishing to exhibit the feeling of horror caused by war’s atrocities, he chooses grieving in its purest if forms; avoiding the artifice of color thus becomes a tool used by the artist, given his need to intellectualize tragedy instead of sensualizing it. Finding inspiration in the daring gestures of German expressionism and the monochromatic tones in black and white art, Alfraji turns to this visual language as a way to portray destructive events, as did Picasso in 1937 through his most powerful political manifesto, Guernica.”
With the cooperation of: Casa Árabe