Steve Sabella Photography | CANVAS Dubai

2015

This 208-page hardback cover is Steve Sabella's first monograph, which looks at the Palestinian artist’s work over the last two decades. The cover is a detail of a work from 2014 entitled Sinopia. “I wanted the text on the cover to be as discreet as possible, because I wanted the work to speak for itself,” says Sabella. Known for printing on an extensive range of materials, the artist’s oeuvre reflects on themes of exile, identity and migration. He recently staged Independence, an exhibition of his photographic works at Dubai’s Meem Gallery, which features photographs he shot during a trip to Croatia last year. “I didn’t want to guide the viewer, I wanted the works to guide them around the space,” he notes. His visually stimulating photography conveys a state of alienation that enables viewers to familiarise with his struggles.
For Sabella, his photographic arabesques are non-symmetric, which act like a metaphor for his non-symmetric life that reflects a state of constant transition. This is further amplified with the abstractions featured in his artworks, which lack gravity because as an artist concerned with what precedes the obvious, he focuses on the concept of space. This is a key factor that readers will be able to observe while viewing his entire body of work in this book. Artist Kamal Boullata has penned the foreword, while Hubertus von Amelunxen contributes essays that afford readers an opportunity to explore Sabella’s dreamlike world. The book also features quotes by the late, celebrated Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish.

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The Monograph

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