Source / Orientations / Foyer

    14/05  | 20:30
    15/05  | 20:30

€ 14 / € 11 (-25/65+)
€ 14 / € 11 (-25/65+)
Arabic > EN (14/05) / FR (15/05)

Meet the artist after the screening on 15/05

If Orientations is a portrait of Tunis reflected in a glass filled with ink, Foyer seems to be a projection without film, where the only visible thing is a palpitating white screen. Voices accompany this emptiness: they are spoken by people who approach the artist at work on the film, questioning him about what he is doing. The camera becomes a foyer around which to listen and discuss, recording the impressions of a city after the revolution. The opacity created by Ismaïl Bahri – currently living between Tunis and Paris – reveals more than images might do. In his movies, he creates micro events that question the conditions for their visibility, disclosing the possibility for a new vision. During his first presence in Brussels, Bahri composes a programme of three recent films, diving into the language of cinema, and drawing a hypothetical line between the unstable quietness of Tunis before and after the revolution.

Source (2016, 8 min) 
By
Ismaïl Bahri   

Camera
Ismaïl Bahri   

Color trading
Pierre-Yves Faye   

Production
le G.R.E.C with the support of CNC. Collection La première image, 2016 

A public commission of 
Centre National des Arts Plastiques – Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication    


Orientations (2010, 20 min) 
By
Ismaïl Bahri   

Camera
Ismaïl Bahri   

Sounds
Ismaïl Bahri     


Foyer (2016, 32 min) 
By
Ismaïl Bahri   

Camera 
Ismaïl Bahri   

Sounds
Ismaïl Bahri   

Montage
Ismaïl Bahri   

Color trading
Pierre-Yves Faye   

Production
Spectre in co-production with La Fabrique Phantom   

Producer
Olivier Marboeuf   

Associated producer
Cédric Walter     


Presentatie
Kunstenfestivaldesarts, BOZAR   

Productie
Spectre Productions & La Fabrique Phantom   

Producent
Olivier Marboeuf   

Associated producer
Cédric Walter

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Impermanence lies at the heart of the work of the Franco-Tunisian artist Ismaïl Bahri. Placing a sheet of wind-tossed paper in front of his camera lens, slowing down falling water drops by making them slide along a thread, observing the reflection of the city in a glass filled with ink held in his hand as he walks along: Ismaïl Bahri makes elementary and empirical gestures, and pays attention to “what is happening”, and what effect these operations will have on him. The artist positions himself as an observer; he gropes around, and talks of “shortsightedness” in relation to his work. He then sets up what he calls a “capture device” for these gestures, usually using video, but also photography and sound, without any specialization. It is quite often outside of the frame of the image that meaning emerges, in the perceptible presence of the surrounding world, which is suddenly revealed.
François Piron

Source […] shows in its entirety the process of a surface disappearing by being consumed by fire – an ordinary sheet of paper devoured by a hole gradually spreading out from its centre. Here the experimental character does not imply any kind of material or technical trickery, it is simply the phenomenon of combustion, watched, just as every one of us once must have watched it with fascination when we were children. At the beginning, the (white) sheet of paper is intact; then a very small brown hole appears, which immediately widens to form an almost perfect circle that eventually extends to the whole sheet. In a sense, if the sheet of paper is the field of view, it is the field itself that eventually disappears. If it is not sentimental, the emotion that accompanies this inexorable elimination is an allegory of everything that disappears – everything that lives – and it is important to note that, in this case, it is not only the sheet of paper (the field of vision) that disappears: the thing that has affected it – i.e. that small hole widening out and surrounded by a thin red border – exists as a continuously developing form which has, itself, been in the process of disappearing since it began to exist.
Jean-Christophe Bailly

Orientations shows a glass filled with ink, held at arm’s length, shot from above and moving through the urban landscape of Tunis. The camera is both just that and the projection surface, the primitive film-maker as modest as his origins. He combines up allusions to text (the ink), tea and coffee (food), the river (nature and time) and finally the instability of the image. 

At first, Foyer seems to be a projection without film, where the only thing visible is a palpitating white screen. Voices accompany this white emptiness. They are spoken by people who approach the cameraman at work on the film, questioning him about what he is doing. In turn, an amateur photographer, a curious passerby, a policeman and a group of young men all approach the man filming. As the situation develops, the discussions reveal to the spectators the principles of a film experience in progress, of the film they are actually watching. The film experience intrigues people, it interrogates and ultimately transforms the camera into a foyer (in the sense of a hearth), around which people gather, to speak, discuss and listen. At first centered on the camera, these conversations quickly reveal singular points of view, which trace the forms of a particular social and political landscape. They offer a glimpse of the context in which a tentative work experience is unfolding, searching for its way in the agitated world.

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The work of Ismaïl Bahri has been shown in various places such as Le Jeu de Paume (Paris), Les Églises (Chelles), the Staatliche Kunsthalle (Karlsruhe), Kunst Im Tunnel (Düsseldorf), the British Film Institute (London) and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (Lisbon). His films have been selected at festivals such as TIFF (Toronto), NYFF (New York), IFFR (Rotterdam), FID (Marseille) and others. Ismaïl Bahri is currently preparing an exhibition that will be presented at La Verrière (Brussels) in September 2018.

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