The Third Line is pleased to present a solo exhibition by artists and filmmakers Joana Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige. The exhibition proudly debuts The Third Line’s newly renovated space, which
The Third Line is pleased to present a solo exhibition by artists and filmmakers Joana Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige. The exhibition proudly debuts The Third Line’s newly renovated space, which is being unveiled alongside this show. Messages with(out) a code presents a selection of new and seminal pieces from their ongoing project Unconformities, which began in 2016 when the artists started collecting a series of earth core samples that revealed the subterranean worlds of cities omnipresent in their personal imaginaries: Athens, Paris, Beirut and Tripoli.
The exhibition is being presented in parallel with Hadjithomas & Joreige’s three-week film retrospective at Cinema Akil that runs from 3rd – 23rd March, 2022. This retrospective also includes the premiere GCC release of Memory Box which had its worldwide premiere at the 71st Berlin International Film Festival.
Unconformities is a geological term used to explain temporal ruptures, natural disasters and geological movements. Working alongside geologists and archaeologists, Hadjithomas & Joreige recuperated drilled and extracted core samples at construction sites from which interconnected works have been created that reveal natural and manmade histories from beneath the earth’s surface.
The exhibition presents a Time Capsule and a series of framed works entitled Trilogies which have both been developed from sites in Monastiraki, Athens. In their Time Capsule works, the artists re-sculpted extracted cores from cities and set them within experimental resin, exposing these buried histories in a vertical, cylindrical structure. In Trilogies, the artists photographed the cores which were then given to archaeologists and historians who drew the significant findings. Hadjithomas & Joreige wrote fragments from the stories they were told as possible narratives behind the findings.
“In these cores, history appears as complex actions, a diverse mix of traces, epochs, and civilisations. It is a constant cycle of destruction and construction, catastrophe and regeneration… Cities mix, erase, bury and recycle the same stones over and again… as a vertiginous palimpsest.” Joana Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige.
An excerpt from the artists’ recent interview with writer and curator Shumon Basar, February 2022.
Palimpsests is also the title of a short film that takes place over several sites across Beirut, and records the various processes used to create the drilling cores, notably the manner in which the material is sorted in order to determine the suitability of the foundations. Palimpsests plays with scales of time and size; the massive confronts the minuscule, and the viewer passes from the macro to the microscopic.
In 2019, the artists created A State which is a series of three images of a drilling core sourced from a large landfill site in Tripoli, Lebanon that has accumulated waste for over 25 years. This site has radically altered the local landscape, and today forms hills that rise 45 metres above sea level. The treatment of waste is at the centre of questions regarding the inheritance of the planet and what we leave behind.
The exhibition also presents three new tapestry works by Hadjithomas & Joreige titled Messages with(out) a code. Derived from their personal experience on archaeological sites, the artists have witnessed the intricacies of the archaeological process where findings are set on a flat surface, giving a one-dimensional aspect to time itself. Hadjithomas & Joreige were fascinated by this process and, using photography, they documented it and became enthralled by the photographs taken which became the point of departure for these tapestry works.
“Tapestry implies a weaving, a juxtaposition of materials. It is an ancestral technique — a tradition — which can render the density of these archaeological compositions. Choosing colours from a multitude of possibilities and materials, the complexity of layers, making and unmaking, knotting and unknotting, restoring the link… Weaving is a way of restoring something that we have lost. A loss that we all feel now — perhaps even more painfully — given the recent events in Lebanon.” Joana Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige.
Courtesy of The Third Line
Feature caption: Joana Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige, A State, 2019, Digital Photography, Edition of 4 + 2APs (L-R) Borehole 1, 235 x 140cm; Borehole 2, 212 x 140 cm; Borehole 3, 230 x 140cm
March 8 (Tuesday) - April 9 (Saturday)
The Third Line
Alserkal Avenue, Warehouse 78, Street 8, Al Quoz 1, Exit 43 off Sheikh Zayed Road. Dubai, UAE, PO Box 72036