Art Front Gallery
2017. Nov. 16 – Dec. 24
Alchemy — Mounir Fatmi
Mounir Fatmi as Storyteller
I first encountered the large scale works of Mounir Fatmi at Africa Remix, a touring exhibition that came to the Mori Art Museum. Fatmi made a Constructivist-like installation from horse jumping barriers. It suggested fragility, as if even a light touch would cause everything to collapse. It was a sublimation of the dangers of competitive horsemanship’s demands for ever faster running and higher jumping. Rails in vivid colour, looking rather pop at first glance, added a somehow dry feeling, resisting interpretation.
Mounir Fatmi was born in Tangier, Morocco. His awareness was stimulated in the local markets, and he then went to study at an art school in Rome. He transgresses the boundaries between these two cultures, relativizing them, and attempting to bridge their differences. In 1993, Fatmi symbolically announced his death in the media, and in a departure from Moroccan tradition, entered into a world of free creation. This meant he no longer saw any culture from established points of view, but treated all equally, without adjudicating or taking sides. This led him to a kind of transcendence.
Fatmi was invited to the Setouchi Triennale in Japan, where he exhibited an installation in a disused schoolyard on Awashima Island. He used stick-like materials placed around an existing statue of children. He also exhibited an installation inside the school building using clocks and world maps, suggesting relative relationships between space and time. This installation occupied many rooms, including a former music room and the head teacher’s office, but giving visitors the impression of an integrated storyline. Fatmi also uses sound as the material of his installations, and has created many video works. In this sense, he can be called a storyteller in many, varied materials and in a truly liberated manner.
This solo-show by Mounir Fatmi uses the limited space of the gallery to give a symbolic glance into his diverse modes of expression.
Mori Art Museum
Director Fumio Nanjo