All Exhibitions


Until 14 September 2017

Basim Magdy works in painting, drawing, text, photography and film. His ephemeral narratives blur fictional and real stories of lived and imagined experiences. These trace the cyclical processes of desire and disappointment in humanity’s attempts at reshaping societies systems and structures. 

It All Started With a Map and a Picture of Scattered Little Houses presents four videos made between 2012 and 2016: No Shooting Stars (2016), The Everyday Ritual of Solitude Hatching Monkeys (2014), The Dent (2014), and Time Laughs Back at You Like a Sunken Ship (2012). These films are lucid and dreamlike visually in their exploration of solitude and collective will. Lyrical and poetic narratives unravel the reciprocity between human relationships, utopian visions, time, perception and memory.

Playing with the materiality of film and the transition from analogue to digital, Magdy addresses, through multiple lenses, the reconciliation of tradition and ritual as we move towards futuristic, industrialized tendencies of existence universally. For this project at Mathaf, the artist and curator experiment with ways of reading and sharing time based work, highlighting the possibility of this medium to articulate the urgencies of our contemporary condition.

Basim Magdy

(b. 1977 in Assiut, Egypt) is a leading artist of his generation. Basim has shown in group exhibitions and Biennials at institutions internationally. He is recipient of the 2016 Deutsche Bank Artist of the Year award and the winner of Abraaj Art Prize, Dubai 2014. Magdy lives and works in Basel, Switzerland and Cairo, Egypt.

Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art

Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, founded in 2010, is situated in Education City in Qatar Foundation (QF), in a renovated former school building. QF is led by HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser. Mathaf is part of Qatar Museums, led by H.E. Sheikha al-Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani.
No Shooting Stars, 2016. Still from Super 16mm and GIF animations transferred to HD, 14:22 minutes.
The Everyday Ritual of Solitude Hatching Monkeys, 2014. Still from 16mm film transferred to HD, 13:22 minutes.
The Dent, 2014. Still from 16mm film transferred to HD video, 19.02 minutes.

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