Last week I attended the opening exhibition “National Clothesline” at ArtSpace Dubai for Shadi Alzaqzouq a young artist born in Benghazi in 1981. Deprived from a passport and a homeland, he grew up among the Palestinian community in Libya and was later expelled along with his family and other Palestinian refugees following the signing of the Oslo Accords. The young man was fifteen when he and his family had to flee the desert where he grew up and return to Gaza. Now based in France since his childhood and teenage years, this environment has left major traces on his work.
Shadi’s work strongly relates to the energy of Arab youth and to the contemporary artistic profusion worldwide. His references are many, his interests most diverse, his researches inexhaustible and his latest works, framed with tires – express his deep connection to urban popular movements.
Elements that are also incorporated in his work represent his family status as a young father, the living conditions of a stateless people, and the international creations spanning from the Occident to Asia, as the promise of encounters goes beyond confining identities.