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Steve Sabella Monograph

Hatje Cantz and Akademie der Künste | Berlin

Text by Hubertus von Amelunxen and foreword by Kamal Boullata

Design by Onlab



Kamal Boullata

"By penetrating into the interstices between image and language, painting and photography, poetry and prose, Hubertus von Amelunxen allows his reader to see what at first glance appears to be untranslatable to the eye. It is through his philosophical vision of photography that we can begin to trace the roots of originality in Sabella’s work. Inspired by its contemplation, he presents us here with a personal ode to contemporary photography. Von Amelunxen’s essay is as enlightening to read as Sabella’s photographic images are a dream to discover."

download the foreword

Author, curator, member of the Akademie der Künste in Berlin | President of the European Graduate School in Saas Fee, Switzerland.

Hubertus von Amelunxen

“These images contain only what was not before and what now corresponds to a becoming that is not based on its past. The structural dismantling of the photographic gaze begun in the In Exile cycle has an inherent hopelessness that takes Steve Sabella not away from photography but toward abstraction through a formal idiom of his own. His images develop into arabesques, intertwining counterpoints, structural images, fabrics interwoven with deductions from the passings of time, planes on which a shattered reality is laid.” 

Journal of Palestine Studies

Dorothea Schöne

"Von Amelunxen provides a sophisticated perspective, and yet his is a gaze of an outsider from a different culture. By comparing Western and Middle Eastern scholarship and theoretical frameworks for artistic practice, he nevertheless builds a profound framework for possible perceptions, analysis, and understandings of Sabella’s work: After the Last Sky (part 1), Disentanglement (part 2), Cut (part 3), Palimpsest (part 4), Translation (part 5), and Counterpoint (part 6) provide six different angles from which the work can and/or could be seen and analyzed. In each discourse, writings by Martin Heidegger are as much taken into consideration as those of Mahmud Darwish, René Descartes as much as al-Hasan Ibn al-Haytham, Edward Said as much as Achille Bonito Oliva or Vilèm Flusser."


Book launch + Film Screening

The Photographers' Gallery | London

"Steve Sabella is considered one of the most thriving artists from Palestine today. The 15-minute-documentary gives an insider view of the artist's practice, in which photographic technique and material experiments become a necessary tool of introspection and visual investigation of the past. In dark, fluid and deliberate images, personal narratives come to light in the darkroom - the womb that brings images and imaginations to life."

Download the press release

In The Darkroom With Steve Sabella

“When you are in the darkroom, you don’t speak with anyone. The only thing you speak with is … art.”

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