Hajra Waheed Fear Brings About 1–5, détail | detail page 5/5, 2010.
Photo : permission de l’artiste | courtesy of the artist

The excavating, cataloguing, and organizing of overlooked historical material is the constant around which Hajra Waheed’s multidisciplinary practice is articulated. Found material, such as declassified government documents, technical diagrams, and photographs — always altered and reimagined — determine the formal qualities of serial bodies of works that unfold like chapters, often assembled over the course of many years. Seeking to expose marginalized and ignored histories, Waheed’s archival constellations examine geopolitical conflicts and how their machinations impact civilian life. Themes of disappearance, displacement, and trauma associated with cycles of colonial violence (Sea Change, 2011–ongoing); surveillance and censorship (Video Installation Project 1–10, 2011–2013); industrial development and sacred architecture (Expansion Charts, 2012–2013) are explored via complex narrative arrangements. Through the contestation and disruption of established historical and cultural narratives, and recontextualization of material traces, Waheed’s practice acts as a catalyst for reflecting on covert structures of power and their inherent violence.

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This article also appears in the issue 96 - Conflict

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