© Copyright 2013 Art Press. Written by Anaël Pigeat
Ismaïl Bahri uses video to talk about cinema and make time and movement visble. Currently in residence at Espace Khiasma in Les Lilas, on the eastern rim of Paris, he is working on an exhibition to be shown there next year.
“Right now I am doing video but I am not a video artist.” As Ismaïl Bahri is at pains to make clear throughout our conversation, his work generally could be taken as constituting one great apparatus for capturing images, or seen as a kind of deconstruction of the cinema, bit by bit – lens, film, light and screen.
Even after art school in Tunis and a doctorate in visual arts at Paris 1 university, Bahri still sees himself as an autodidact. True, he seriously reinvented his practice when he came to France. Hence, perhaps, the importance for him of playing on the meanders of technique. Starting with his earliest works, he has employed materials and processes that are extremely simple as if they were “precision instruments”.