James Webb

Untitled (Al Madat)

James Webb Untitled Al Madat

source:theotherjameswebbtumblrcom
James Webb, “Al Madat,” 2014. A recording of a Sufi dhikr undertaken by patients at the Sultan Bahu Rehab Centre in Westridge, Mitchell’s Plain. Dhikr (literally, “remembrance”) is a traditional Islamic recitation, where sacred names are chanted with special breathing techniques, often creating trance-like effects. This practice was brought to the Cape with the Malay slaves, and is now used by the rehabilitation centre as an augmentation to the curative process. “Al Madat,” the specific dhikr used for this installation, translates as “help,” and is here used to implore the Prophet for assistance.

Started by Shafiek Davids in 2005, the Sultan Bahu Centre is a non-profit organisation in the field of substance abuse – mainly heroin and methamphetamine (tik) – in both Mitchell’s Plain and Bonteheuwel. The centre operates as a drug treatment facility in lower socio-economic communities, offering a six-week intensive day programme with continual care thereafter.

Sultan Bahu (1628 – 1691) was an Islamic scholar, poet and Sufi saint, founder of the Sawari Qadiri Sufi Order.

Audio extracts can be heard here: https://soundcloud.com/theotherjameswebb/sets/sultan-bahu-rehabilitation

Photograph by Kyle Morland

Courtesy the artist, Galerie Imane Farès (Paris) and blank projects (Cape Town).

March 1, 2014
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source:theotherjameswebbtumblrcom
James Webb

James Webb (born Kimberley, South Africa, in 1975) is an artist whose work is framed in both large-scale installations in galleries and museums, and as unannounced interventions in public spaces, often making use of ellipsis, displacement, and détournement to explore the nature of belief and the dynamics of communication in our contemporary world. Webb’s practice employs a variety of media including audio, installation and text, referencing aspects of the conceptualist and minimalist traditions, as well as his academic studies in advertising, comparative religion, and theatre.

Current solo presentations include Webb’s first North American institutional exhibition at The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, United States of America, 2018. Recent solo presentations include Norrtälje Konsthall, Norrtälje, Sweden, 2018; Galerie Imane Farès, Paris, France, 2016; Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield, United Kingdom, 2016; Hordaland Kunstsenter, Bergen, Norway, 2015; blank projects, Cape Town, South Africa, 2014; CentroCentro, Madrid, Spain, 2013; Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa, 2012; and MAC, Birmingham, United Kingdom, 2010.

Major group exhibitions include the 13th Biennial of Dakar (2018), 4th Prospect Triennial of New Orleans (2017), Documenta 14 (2017), 13th Biennial of Sharjah (2017), 12th Bienal de la Habana (2015), 55th Biennale di Venezia (2013), the 3rd Marrakech Biennale (2009), the 2009 Melbourne International Arts Festival and the 8th Biennale d’Art Contemporain de Lyon (2007). Other notable group shows include spaces such as Wanås Konst and Historiska, Sweden; MAXXI Roma, Italy; Darat al Funun, Jordan; Théâtre Graslin, France; and Tate Modern, London. In 2008 he curated Fear of the Known, a festival of extreme listening, featuring international sound artists in Cape Town, Stellenbosch, and Johannesburg.

Webb’s work has been acquired by numerous international collections, and his projects have been written about and published in “Xenagogue” (Hordaland Kunstsenter, 2015) and the forthcoming monograph “…” (blank projects, 2018). His work is represented by blank projects, Cape Town, and Galerie Imane Farès, Paris.