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Zineb Sedira: Can’t You See The Sea Changing? at De La Warr Pavilion

September 24, 2022–January 8, 2023

Zineb Sedira uses photography, installation, and film to explore questions of identity, gender, environment, and collective memory. She draws on her own experience and her intimate ties to Algeria, France, and the UK. Can’t You See the Sea Changing?, Sedira’s first exhibition in a public gallery in the UK in more than 12 years, spans both of the De La Warr Pavilion’s galleries and focuses on her ongoing research into the conditions of transnational trade, identity, and immigrant consciousness in a post-colonial context, in which the sea is a recurring motif.

Over the course of her career, Sedira has established herself as a key figure in the discussion of what it means to juggle multiple cultural identities, frequently fusing the autobiographical narration, fiction, and documentary genres. Through her many storytelling techniques, Sedira explores what she terms “spaces where mobility expires,” or people’s (inability) to leave, come back, flee, or remain un transit between certain territories and identities. Sedira’s work explores what it means to be transported through visionary acts of imagination, acts that carry us to different places through the fusion of past and present time frames. Her narratives are embedded with histories of migration and exile, particularly in relation to her home countries of Algeria and France.

The exhibition covers the years 2008 to the present and combines photography, installation, film, and archival material in a constellation of seafaring traces. It draws on Sedira’s fascination with the sea as a mysterious yet geopolitically charged space as well as the coastal context of the De La Warr Pavilion. The recollections, everyday occurrences, and terrible deaths of persons who have traveled across the nearby waters are combined with images of stately lighthouses, abandoned ships, and weathered rocks. In order to uncover stories of migration and movement that would otherwise go unnoticed, Sedira emphasizes these human narratives in her work, creating an oceanic archive that demonstrates the ability of photographs to reassemble our knowledge of the past. Through the artist’s analytical eye, the exhibition draws upon her ongoing exploration of archival processes and the different ‘windows’ or thresholds that they can open up. 

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. 

Upcoming exhibitions
February 4–May 21, 2023

Angelo Madsen Minax: A Crisis of Human Contact

A filmmaker and artist with offices in Vermont and New York City, Angelo Madsen Minax. His multi-faceted activity includes performance, text, communal practices, sound and music, narrative cinema, essay film, media installation, and documentary filmmaking. Intimacies between queer and trans people, biological and chosen patterns of kinship, metaphysical and technical phenomena, historical records, and imaginative speculation are all topics covered in Minax’s works. His work is fueled by his background of participation in justice-oriented communities and DIY media activism, which draws on parts of auto-ethnography and psychodynamics. His first significant solo exhibition in a public space will be titled A Crisis of Human Contact and held at the De La Warr Pavilion.

Anna-Maria Nabirye & Annie Saunders: Up In Arms

The De La Warr Pavilion commissioned artists Anna-Maria Nabirye and Annie Saunders to create the Up In Arms project, which combines social practice, visual art, and performance. This project blurs the lines between process and artwork.

Locals in Hastings and Rother are welcome to participate in free social practice workshops that will be led by Nabirye and Saunders in the weeks leading up to the launch of the exhibition. To recreate and re-embodie the iconic 1971 portrait of activists and friends Dorothy Pitman-Hughes and Gloria Steinem, participants will work in pairs. The artists provide a safe environment for two friends to discuss friendship, racism, and feminism through this method. The subsequent documentation and recordings will be included in a sizable display on the first floor gallery that will include film, photography, and historical documents. A live performance that will be held in conjunction with the exhibition at De La Warr Pavilion in the spring of 2023 will also feature footage from the social practice.

De La Warr Pavilion
Bexhill-on-Sea TN40 1DP
United Kingdom
Hours: Monday–Sunday 10am–5pm

T +44 1424 229111
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