Taysir Batniji

Hannoun . 1997- 2009

Taysir Batniji . + Sfeir-Semler Gallery

Batniji often works with media that disappear or disintegrate over time. In his performance installation, Hanoun (a Palestinian poppy), which was first presented in the Palestinian Pavillion at the Venice Biennale in 2009, Batniji demonstrates the impermanence of life and memory.Inspired by a childhood memory of sharpening pencils in order to avoid completing an assignment, the artist indulges in an almost cathartic ritual of sharpening the pencil and leaving the discarded blooms of fragile shavings to fall to the floor. The work carries strong symbolism to fallen fighters, which the poppy traditionally represents. Hannoun can be seen as an intimate space of meditation, yet it is still inaccessible. This draws on Taysir state of flux in between Gaza and Paris. His practice is intrinsically linked to Gaza yet he is unable to have a stable practice there.
Sfeir-Semler Gallery

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