COLLECTED, a new platform for art writing, including reviews, interviews and features, launched on Wednesday last. My review of Nassiem Valamanesh’s Distant Words & Hassan Hajjaj’s My Rockstar Experimental, Volume I at the Crawford Art Gallery is on the website now.
“…Where My Rockstar Experimental, Volume 1 lulls the viewer with its dazzling and uplifting display of multiculturalism, Nassiem Valamanesh’s Distant Words is a much quieter and sombre video in comparison. In many ways, Distant Words is the antithesis of My Rockstar Experimental, Volume I: rather than the funky, otherworldly stream of music and multicoloured patterns offered by Hajjaj’s video, Distant Words is a melancholic montage piece that demands active concentration rather than the passive, absorptive viewing mode that the former enables. Furthermore, where soft printed seats and coffee tables stamped with brash logos accompany Hajjaj’s installation, the space before Distant Words is empty, creating a more difficult viewing experience to that of the second installation. In the absence of seating, one slumps against a wall or even sits on the ground in order to watch Valamanesh’s video unfold…”
Read the full review here.