Presented in SAF’s Al Hamriyah Studios, located on Sharjah’s northern coast, Marwan Rechmaoui’s SB13 commission Untitled 12 (2017) expands on his interest in cartography by foregrounding the sentient capacity of spatial information. Critical of the impoverished representations of space that are often produced by two-dimensional surveying methods, he accounts for discrepancies between perception and empirical data by considering the disposition of the geography as well as that of the materials used to articulate its diverse topographies.
In Rechmaoui’s 12-panel work, pours of concrete and beeswax meet at a line of copper suggestive of a running shoreline. Here, the malleable metal known for its high thermal conductivity functions as a threshold marking the volatile relationship between land and sea. Not simply an aesthetic exercise, Rechmaoui’s work features expanses of manmade and natural compounds, the result of carefully calculated proportions of weight and dimension derived from exacting data on the coastal districts, the point of departure for his compositions. With all elements taken together, Rechmaoui’s work communicates scientific, expressive and conceptual information about the environment through qualitative and quantitative analysis grounded in methodological precision.
This project was part of Sharjah Biennial 13.