Excerpt loop (1:58 min) from the video sequence of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai (at 828 metres the world’s highest building) superimposed on an adaptation of the painting The Tower of Babel (1587) by an unknown Flemish painter of the Lucas van Valckenborch school.
The Tower of Babel, 1597
Unknown Flemish painter of the Lucas van Valckenborch school
Collection Kurpfälzisches Museum, Heidelberg
Excerpt loop (2:17 min) from the video sequence of the Royal Atlantis Resort & Residences construction site in Dubai, superimposed on the painting Promenade du Harem (1856) by Jean-Léon Gérôme.The long installation version starts before sunrise; the website’s excerpt loop starts just as the sun begins to rise and at the moment a boat carrying construction workers floats by, overlaying the harem’s excursion boat which is being rowed by slaves. The cheesy background music comes from a nearby shopping mall.
Promenade du Harem, 1856
Collection Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, VA
Excerpt loop (1:58 min) from the video sequence of the Gulf Defense & Aerospace (GDA) 2019 international arms fair in Kuwait, showing visitors and a display of tanks from the First Gulf War, superimposed on an adapted version of the painting Bataille d’Héliopolis (1837) by Léon Cogniet. The painting shows a battle between French versus Ottoman and Egyptian troops during Napoleon Bonaparte’s Egyptian campaign (1798–1801).
Bataille d’Héliopolis, 1837
Collection Château de Versailles
Le Sahara, 1867
Collection Musée d’Orsay, Paris
Excerpt loop (1:19 min) from the video sequence of the Caucasian Baku oilfields and downtown Baku City (the full video installation version finishes with children playing in the ashes of a garbage dump fire next to the oilfields), superimposed on an adapted version of the engraving The Baku Petroleum Fields (1886) by William Simpson.
The Baku Petroleum Fields, 1886
Excerpt loop (1:46 min) from the video sequence of a street scene on Taksim Square in Istanbul, with the construction site of a new mosque, superimposed on a velvet cushion from a souvenir shop depicting a 17th-century Orientalist Istanbul street scene behind the Hagia Sophia* by an unknown artist. Taksim Square was the epicentre of the Gezi protests in 2015 and could be called an ideological “battleground” between Republican-secular and authoritarian-Islamist Turkey.
Video-sequence of the Bagdad sex-show theatre entrance in Barcelona, superimposed on an adapted version of the painting The Odalisque (1861) by Marià Fortuny.
THE ODALISQUE (1861)
by Marià Fortuny
Collection Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, Barcelona