Artists of Algerian origin exhibiting in France 1989-2012: an analysis of selected artists' work and its reception - the urban, the home and the Arab woman, and the 'global' art world

Planel, Alice (2013) Artists of Algerian origin exhibiting in France 1989-2012: an analysis of selected artists' work and its reception - the urban, the home and the Arab woman, and the 'global' art world. (PhD thesis), Kingston University.

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Abstract

This thesis investigates the work of a selected number of artists of Algerian origin who rose to prominence in France between 1989 and 2012 and analyses the reception of their work in French institutions of art. The artists are Adel Abdessemed (b.1971), Kader Attia (b. 1970), Faycal Baghriche (b. 1972), Samta Benhyahia (b.1950), Zoulikha Bouabdellah (b. 1977), Mohamed Bourouissa (b. 1978), Katia Kameli (b.1973) and Zineb Sedira (b.1963). This is the first in-depth study on these artists's work within a French exhibiting context and it also represents the first critical analysis of the impact that collective memory, French cultural policies and an emerging discourse ofa 'global' art world system has had on the reception of their work. Based upon extensive primary research on the exhibiting practices of French institutions and responses of the French press, alongside interviews with the artists, the thesis engages with art historical, sociological and cultural memory methods in order to examine the emergence and reception of these artist' work. The analysis also brings into focus the aesthetic preoccupations of the artists and their diverse contexts of production. Chapter one presents a critical overview through a historiography of major . exhibitions of artists of Algerian origin in French institutions of art between 1989- 2012. The following four chapters are structured through themes that are recurrent in the artists's work: the urban, the home and the Arab woman and the global world. Chapter two focuses on Abdessemed and Attia's engagement with urban themes, and questions the impact of collective narratives of the 'banlieue' on their work. Chapter three analyses the representations of the self and the domestic in the early work of Benyahia, Bouabdellah, Kameli and Sedira, and proposes that their critical diasporic narratives problematize the dominant discourses of collective memory in France. An analysis of the work of Abdessemed, Attia and Sedira in chapter four foregrounds the discontinuities and continuities within a 'global' world-order with specific reference to Franco/Algerian crossings. Overall, through a detailed analysis of the institutional contexts of France and the 'global' art world, the thesis offers an institutional critique arguing that diasporic experiences - evident in the work of artists of Algerian origin - are rarely acknowledged or debated in French institutions, while artistic nationality is over-determined. Informed by Isobel Armstrong's concept of a 'radical aesthetic' and Deleuze and Guattari's notion of the rhizome, the thesis also argues that aesthetics and contexts of production need to be acknowledged in the analyses of the artist's work.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: This work was supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council
Physical Location: This item is held in stock at Kingston University library.
Research Area: Art and design
Faculty, School or Research Centre: Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture > School of Art & Design History
Depositing User: Niki Wilson
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2014 14:56
Last Modified: 17 Jul 2014 14:56
URI: http://eprints.kingston.ac.uk/id/eprint/28772

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