Photographic objects have been the centre of Akram Zaatari’s (born in Saida/Lebanon in 1966, lives and works in Beirut) artistic practice since 1995. Photographic formations or emergences, as he calls them, are the focus of this exhibition: enigmatic objects that bear traces of past events and accompany people through key moments in their lives. Cherished at times, destroyed at others, photographs are capable of provoking diverse and extreme reactions. Initially, capturing instances, they change over time. The perception of an image changes, but sometimes the physicality of the object itself is also altered as a result of its contact with the natural, social and political environment. As a co-founder of the Arab Image Foundation (1997 in Beirut) and as principle contributor to its expanding collection, Zaatari’s oeuvre represents an uncompromising contribution to the discourse on photography and its changing function over the years.
We met the artist during the setup of his exhibition at the K21 in Duesseldorf in 2017 for an interview and produced the official trailer for the show.
Photo: Ralph Goertz © IKS-Medienarchiv