For Steve Sabella, the occupation attaches each Palestinian to an Israeli, as if in a tandem jump. The Israeli is always in control, placing the Palestinian under threat in a never-ending hostage situation. The latter has two options: either surrender or unbuckle the harness. Sabella’s new book, The Parachute Paradox, is an imaginative memoir telling the life story of the artist born in Jerusalem’s Old City and raised under Israeli occupation. After living through both intifadas, being kidnapped in Gaza, and learning to navigate Palestinian and Israeli culture, he feels in exile at home. Blurring fact and fiction, love and loss, the memoir traces one man’s arduous search for liberation from within, through a confrontation with his colonized imagination.

The artist talk marks the recent publication of Steve Sabella’s latest book, The Parachute Paradox. A screening of Nadia J. Kabalan’s short documentary In the Darkroom with Steve Sabella will shed light on Sabella’s perception of image  and imagination. He will read excerpts from his new book and discuss the meaning of exile and migration for his work with Alya Sebti and Almút Sh. Bruckstein.

In English

Steve Sabella
Alya Sebti
Almút Sh. Bruckstein

Organized by

Steve Sabella in cooperation with ICI Berlin, ifa-Galerie and Taswir projects

Steve Sabella, born in Jerusalem, is a Berlin-based artist and author. He holds an MA in photographic studies from the University of Westminster and an MA in art business from Sotheby’s Institute of Art. His work is exhibited and held in collections around the world, and his monograph Steve Sabella: Photography 1997–2014 (Hatje Cantz 2014) was published in collaboration with the Akademie der Künste Berlin. The Kerber Verlag just published The Parachute Paradox.

Alya Sebti is the Director of ifa-Galerie Berlin (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen). She has curated several exhibitions in Europe and North Africa and was the artistic director for the 5th edition of the Marrakech Biennale in 2014 and curator of the exhibition Casablanca, Black Energy in 2015 for Mons, European Capital of Culture. She has written and lectured extensively on art and the public sphere. She currently teaches at the Salzburg International Academy of Arts. She is board member of the International Biennale Association.

Almút Sh. Bruckstein is a philosopher, curator of international exhibitions, and founder of Taswir projects, an international platform for artistic research and diasporic thinking. She held various professorships, including the Rudolf-Arnheim Professorship at the Humboldt Universität zu Berlin. She is the author of House of Taswir. Doing and Undoing Things, and Vom Aufstand der Bilder (Fink, 2007 and 2014, respectively), and curated the Taswir exhibition at Martin-Gropius-Bau 2009-2010.

© Steve-Sabella

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