Works in the fields of photography, installation and film, Zineb Sedira draws on her personal history and close association with Algeria, France, and Britain to explore notions of identity, gender, environment, and collective memory. Across both galleries of the De La Warr Pavilion, Can’t you see the sea changing? is Sedira’s first exhibition in a UK public gallery in over 12 years and focuses on her ongoing investigation into the conditions of transnational trade, migrant identity and consciousness in a post-colonial context in which the sea is a recurring motif.
Throughout her career, Sedira has become a leading voice in exploring what it means to live across cultures, often bringing together autobiographical narrative, fiction and documentary genres. Through her different approaches to storytelling, Sedira questions what she calls “spaces in which mobility occurs”, or the (in)ability of individuals to depart, return, flee, or transit between particular countries and identities to exist. While her narratives are embedded in stories of migration and exile, particularly in relation to her native countries of Algeria and France, in her work Sedira explores what it means to be transported through visionary acts of imagination, acts that carry us through the world to different places of fusion past and present periods.
Based on Sedira’s fascination with the sea as an enigmatic but geopolitically charged space and the coastal context of the De La Warr Pavilion, the exhibition spans a period from 2008 to the present and combines photography, installation, film and archive material in a constellation of traces of seafaring. Images of imposing lighthouses, abandoned shipwrecks and eroded rocks are overlaid with the memories, daily experiences and tragic deaths of those who have trekked the surrounding seas. By highlighting these human narratives in her work, Sedira builds an oceanic archive that unearths stories of migration and movement that would otherwise remain unseen, while demonstrating the power of images to reconstruct our understanding of history. Through the artist’s analytical eye, the exhibition draws on her ongoing exploration of archival processes and the various ‘windows’ or thresholds they can open.
Can’t you see the sea changing? is a collaboration between De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill-on-Sea and Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA), where the exhibition will be presented in Spring 2023.
Feb 4-21 May 2023
Angelo Madsen Minax: A crisis of human contact
Angelo Madsen Minax is an artist and filmmaker based in Vermont and New York City. His multidisciplinary practice encompasses documentary film, narrative cinema, essay film, media installation, sound and music, performance, text, and collective practices. Minax’s projects explore queer and transsexual intimacies, chosen and biological kinship structures, metaphysical and technological phenomena, archival documents and speculative imagination. Drawing on elements of autoethnography and psychodynamics, his work is driven by his history of participation in justice-focused communities and DIY media activism. A crisis of human contact at the De La Warr Pavilion will be his first major solo exhibition in a public institution.
Anna-Maria Nabirye & Annie Saunders: In the arms
Artist Anna Maria Nabirye and Annie Saunders erase the boundaries between process and artwork by bringing together social practice, visual arts and performance for their In the arms Project commissioned by the De La Warr Pavilion.
Ahead of the exhibition opening, residents of Hastings and Rother can take part in free social practice sessions moderated by Nabirye and Saunders. Participants are invited in pairs to recreate and re-impersonate the iconic 1971 portrait of activists and friends Dorothy Pitman-Hughes and Gloria Steinem. Through this process, the artists create a safe space for two friends to converse about friendship, racism, and feminism. The resulting documentation and recordings are integrated into an expansive installation in the gallery on the ground floor, which includes film, photography and archive material. Recordings from social practice will also be used in a live performance to be presented alongside the exhibition at the De La Warr Pavilion in Spring 2023.