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> Adel Abidin | I love to love
October 31st, 5pm – 8pm
November 1st until November 24
Tue-Fri 11am-5pm; Sat-Sun 12pm-4pm
, Ruoholahdenranta 3a /PL 316, Helsinki
“Those standing around would jump up an down, pound their heads, collapse into theatrical swoons, rip their clothes, and shake their fists at the air in futile rage…”
(Barbara Demick with slight adjustment by Adel Abidin)
Forum Box proudly presents I love to love…, Adel Abidin’s eagerly anticipated solo exhibition in Finland after his acclaimed show at Kiasma in 2010. Tina Charles’ 1976 disco hit “I Love to Love (But my Baby Loves to Dance)” is the unlikely backdrop against which Abidin introduces new works that continue to draw on themes such as power relations and violence. In I love to love the charged and intimate setting of a nightclub functions as a stage upon which the dynamics of seeing and blindness, perpetrator and victim, looking and being looked at are played out in sinister ways. The mechanics of capturing and releasing an image, a gaze, a movement, in an atmosphere of surveillance, are trapped and amplified in Abidin’s video and light box installations. Moving to the lightness of a love song, and its rhythm, becomes a treacherous, dark, and disturbingly ambiguous game.
is a visual artist. His multi-media practice explores the complex relationships between culture, politics, and identity. Using a sharp palette of irony and humor, Abidin gravitates towards social situations dealing with elusive experiences and cultural alienation. Abidin uses his cross-cultural background to create a distinct visual language often laced with sarcasm and paradox, while maintaining his ultimately humanistic approach. Abidin was born in Baghdad in 1973 and currently lives and works in Helsinki, Finland. He has exhibited in both group and solo exhibitions including the Helsinki Museum of Contemporary Art (KIASMA), the Centre of Contemporary Art, Salamanca, the 10th Sharjah Biennale, The 17th Sydney Biennale, and the 52nd and 54th Venice Biennale. In 2010 he exhibited his well-known video installation, Three Love Songs, at Mathaf. In 2011 he presented his critically acclaimed video installation, Consumption of War.
Adel’s exhibitions in 2012 included: L’institut du Monde Arabe, a major solo exhibition at Arter – space for art in Istanbul and at Kunsthalle Winterthur, Switzerland. He has also been selected to participate in a group show in Tokyo at The Mori Art Museum entitled Arab Express. In 2013, his 2006 video installation, 52 Guaranteed Affections, got selected to be part of the big celebrated anniversary group exhibition at the Mori Art Museum. Adel’s work has been part of a group exhibition at the Mead Gallery in the UK. And also exhibited at Hauser & Wirth Gallery in London. The New York Times selected his work Al-Warqaa 2013, as the main piece of Middle Eastern art during Dubai art fair. In 2014, Adel will be exhibiting at the contemporary Art Museum in Rome and many others.
is an independent curator and critic based in Rotterdam. Her main interests include: the intersections of aesthetics, media and politics; media art and contemporary art in and from the Middle East. She is a regular contributor to Springerin, MetropolisM. Her writing has been published in Bidoun, Art Asia Pacific, Art Papers, Canvas, X-tra Majalla, ARTPulse, Daily Star, De Gids, De Volkskrant, Art Margins and Harper’s Bazaar Arabia. She has also written numerous catalogue and monographic essays on artists from the Middle East. With Alessandro Ludovico she edited the Mag.net Reader2: Between Paper and Pixel (2007), and Mag.net Reader3: Processual Publishing, Actual Gestures (2009), based on a series of debates organized at Documenta XII. She has taught at universities and academies in The Netherlands and the Middle East, and has curated video and film screenings for projects and festivals internationally, including for Rotterdam’s International Film Festival, Norwegian Short Film Festival and Video D.U.M.B.O. She is a board member of the IMPAKT Media Festival, and sits on the advisory board of Artterritories (Ramallah), the arts organization TENT (Rotterdam), and is a member of selection committee of the Mondriaan Fund (NL), Netherlands’ largest fund for arts and culture, and the Fund for Creative Industries and e-Culture (NL). She was a nominator for the prestigious 2013 Jameel Art Prize organized by the V&A. In 2012 she curated Spectral Imprints for the Abraaj Group Capital Art Prize 2012. Nat Muller is editorial correspondent for Ibraaz and most recently was a speaker on BBC World’s award-winning program The Doha Debates.
Emmi Kattelus T +358(0)96855 0080
I love to love…is realized with the generous support of
Barjeel Art Foundation
Arts Promotion Centre Finland