Name: Lydia Ourahmane
Hometown: Saïda, Algeria
Currently Lives: In a two-bedroom condominium in Barcelona, above Sala Parés, a venerable artwork gallery
Claim to Fame: Ms. Ourahmane is an Algerian-British artist identified for sprawling installations that defy geopolitical boundaries. A latest work, “Barzakh,” (it means “separation” or “a barrier between two things” in Arabic) recreated her former condominium in Algeria. It concerned transferring 5,000 private belongings, together with chandeliers and clothes, to the Kunsthalle Basel gallery in Switzerland, in addition to the Triangle — Astérides in Marseille, France. Frieze journal named the present probably the greatest of 2021. “The politics around how objects move around the world interest me,” Ms. Ourahmane stated.
Big Break: Born in 1992 to an Algerian father and Malaysian mom, Ms. Ourahmane grew up in Algeria throughout a time of social and political upheaval, earlier than transferring to London in 2001. Art consumed her at a younger age. “I started skipping my business and English lit classes to hide in the art department one block away,” she stated. She studied artwork at Goldsmiths, University of London, the place she created a sound set up, “The Third Choir,” constituted of 20 empty oil barrels from Algeria. It was thought-about the primary art work to be legally exported from Algeria within the 52 years because the nation gained independence from French colonial rule.
Latest Project: Ms. Ourahmane’s touring set up, “Barzakh,” arrives on the S.M.A.Okay modern artwork museum in Ghent, Belgium on May 21. So what’s it like having gallery guests snoop by way of your private belongings? “There’s nothing in my life that I’m ashamed of really, because my life is pure,” she stated.
Next Thing: Ms. Ourahmane will set up a yet-to-be-titled sculpture on the KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin this October. “It is too premature to talk about at this point aside from the fact that we have been having discussions around the impossibility of permanence,” she stated.
Occupational Safety: For a latest exhibition on the Renaissance Society in Chicago, Ms. Ourahmane collaborated with the French artist Alex Ayed on a multimedia set up that included, amongst different issues, an ultrasonic audio scrambler and uncooked lithium exported from Lithuania that got here suspended in oil and sealed securely in its unique packaging. Before dealing with the hazardous steel, Ms. Ourahmane sought recommendation from chemists from the University of Chicago. “We became interested in the potential and impossibility of the material itself,” she stated.