A gift to the artist from his father, after he did Hajj as a child
Light passes through us as if through water, or sweet, molten syrup. Silent as glass, our images and patterns are rich with hues. We are eternal in this way. Our images circle in unison. Keep clicking and we keep moving. Stop, and we do not disappear, but lie dormant and still. We are like dancers to a drum or the spin of the wheel of fortune. Linger here or there, wherever you dare, wherever our hues take the tunes of your eyes. As your necks crane towards the light, our images start to burn brighter, feeding your subconscious with the promises of paradise. These images, from old to new, are planted as though in hard soil, or in sand or glass, and carefully drawn with lead by the artist’s hand. The prisms of the light passing through us play as shadows on the mind, glints in the eyes of makers, writers, preachers and prayers. Like the hearts of sunflowers, of roses, of anything that moves towards the eternal spiral, we capture at once the chaos, the harmony, the truths and the untruths.
This work transcends the objects. Ultimately, what I’m working with isn’t only the artefacts themselves, but the stories attached to them. For me, each tale is the manifestation of the object, and each object is a tangible materialisation of an underlying narrative. The work finds its equilibrium somewhere between the stories and chronology they’re chaptered into, the objects becoming knots or points along the timeline, woven into stories as part of the language of this artwork. Each story draws out a tale that intends to trigger imagination and memory, mixing fact with fiction, with the ultimate aim of straddling, conflating and confusing fixed notions of history to open up the unofficial histories that shape the character of place and memory. Ahmed Mater2014