Ghyzlène Boukaïla

January 28 — February 13, 2022

The heart is flesh
The heart is flesh
The heart is flesh, if it doesn’t cook it burns

Cheb Abdou tried to leave a message. His writing, his poetry, his love life, and his gender, all exist in this complex time–space; the dark decade.

There is a sculptural object, derived from the seeming impossibility of receiving his message – a line of telecommunication – from an era where the voice was conditioned. Everything we hold to exist, is subject to destruction or post-reconstruction.

Raï is a musical genre, born in Algeria towards the end of the 1970’s. Bluntly translating to ‘opinion’, the voice of raï morphed, as geo- and socio-political situations complicated, rendering its voice exceedingly political.

In the exhibition #31#, the Algerian artist, filmmaker and activist, Ghyzlène Boukaïla, presents a filmic proposal after a raïsong written and sung by Cheb Abdou in 1993.

Boukaïla, who was born into a family of Algerian revolutionaries, presents the work in an extended arrangement across the gallery’s two floors, as that of a potent raïsong channeling the legacy of Abdou. In #31# (appel masque), we follow another - present-day - raï singer; Cheikh Morad Djadja who navigates himself within the landscapes of a continuously absent society, probing Djadja for a space of expression in which his trans-identity could be allowed to exist.

Installation Shot
<i>On The Other Side Of His Dream</i>, 2022, Sound, Wooden furniture.
<i>Cheb Abdou - Appel Masque</i>(extract from lyrics), 2022, Video Projection on Wall, 5 min.
<i>#31# (appel masque)</i>, 2021, 4K Prores Video, 16 min with 4 min intermission.
<i>#31# (appel masque)</i>, 2021, 4K Prores Video, 16 min with 4 min intermission.