Khaled Ben Slimane, Sans titre no.33, no.44, 2018. Photo credit: Firas Ben Khelifa. Courtesy of the artist and Elmarsa Gallery

SELECTIONS delves into the world of acquisitions, exploring what museums and galleries have been adding to their collections in the past five years as well as featuring images and summaries of works and artists.

KHALED BEN SLIMANE
Bio: Tunisian, b. 1951
Title: Sans titre no.33, 2018
Medium: Ceramic decorated in lustre and green glaze
Size: 62.5 x 31 x 16 cm
Acquired by: Permanent collection of the Victoria and
Albert Museum, London
Artist represented by: Elmarsa Gallery, Tunis | Dubai
Acquisition date: 2020

Ceramic sculpture in the form of a mosque with one tower and a crescent on top of it with grey and black glaze. Khaled Ben Slimane’s new project is clearly architectural in nature; the rectangular parallelepipeds he once painted are now stacked one on top of the other or are contiguous to Aggregates, which are covered with his calligraphic writing, sign formulas and habitual symbols; they simulate architectural designs in contrasting colours dominated by black and white, with shades of red, blue and ochre scattered here and there.

Photo credit: Firas Ben Khelifa
Courtesy of the artist and Elmarsa Gallery
Credit line: (c) Victoria and Albert Museum, London

KHALED BEN SLIMANE
Bio: Tunisian, b. 1951
Title: Sans titre no.44, 2018
Medium: Ceramic with underglaze painting in black and orange
Size: 56.5 x 28 x 10 cm
Acquired by: Permanent collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Artist represented by: Elmarsa Gallery, Tunis | Dubai
Acquisition date: 2020

Ceramic sculpture in the form of a church with two towers and a cross on top of one of them in white with underglaze painting in black and orange. Ben Slimane’s work reflects the image of a hermit artist absorbed in his inner quest, watching in the privacy of his retreat the genesis of so many dazzled forms, so many unusual achievements, in a space of meditation that nurtures and protects them, so to speak, from the trepidations of the century. The present ceramic works reveal, once again, the intuitions of the man of signs, the mystical impetus of the inspired calligrapher, the ceramist’s know-how and the reveries of the designer of so many imaginary architectures; his entire work is wrapped in a veil of apparent melancholy – the translation or reflection of a disillusioned gaze that the artist, witness of his time, casts on the contradictions of contemporary reality.

 

 

Photo credit: Firas Ben Khelifa
Courtesy of the artist and Elmarsa Gallery
Credit line: (c) Victoria and Albert Museum, London

A VERSION OF THIS ARTICLE APPEARED IN PRINT IN SELECTIONS #55

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SELECTIONS is a platform for the arts, focusing on the Arab World.

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