Djamel Tatah at Algiers
In 2010, The French Academy in Rome – Villa Medici organized the exhibition The Mutants where several rooms were dedicated to painter Djamel Tatah . Today, in cooperation with the Algerian Agency for Cultural Diffusion (AARC – l’Agence Algérienne pour le Rayonnement Culturel) and the National Public Modern and Contemporary Art Museum of Algiers (MAMA), Villa Medici is organizing the first retrospective exhibition of the Franco-Algerian artist in partnership with the Maeght Foundation and the French Institute of Algiers (IFA), thus confirming its role as a prime venue for cultural and artistic exchanges in the Mediterranean area. The Djamel Tatah exhibition curated by Éric de Chassey will be held at the MAMA in Algiers from 21 September to 21 November 2013 .The retrospective exhibition, which will give the public the opportunity to discover his work from the mid 1980s until today, is his first one-man show in Algeria. Djamal Tatah paints life-size human bodies devoid of flesh or volume in abstract environments, areas with geometrical colors on different planes. He combines the techniques of wax painting, photography and the digitalization of images. Suspended in timeless silence, walking men and men lying down, the hittistes (“sustainers of walls”), are some of the motifs that the artist presents in an attempt to represent the contemporary condition of human beings around themes related to urban life, wars, suspension or fall. According to Éric de Chassey, “During 25 years of painting, Djamel Tatah has remained faithful to the formal principles he had established early in his career, which are the depositories of a very simple intent: to unflaggingly divulge the various ways in which humanity, incarnated in ordinary singularities, has the power to affirm itself as a presence in the world, whatever its specific characteristics be, thus creating unique pictorial sites, paintings, which can function as a model (models in a scale reduced to the essential, as well as models to be imitated) with which visitors can confront themselves.” Born in 1959 at Saint-Chamond (France) from Algerian parents, Djamel Tatah lives and works in Burgundy. After his studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Saint-Etienne (1981-1986), he moved to Marseille, where he has developed an important part of his creative techniques and realized large-sized paintings and polyptychs. His works have been shown in numerous exhibitions, notably at the Art Center of Salamanca, Spain (2002) ; the Museum of Canton, China (2005) ; the Le Parvis Center of Contemporary Art at Tarbes (2007) ; the Museum of Fine Arts in Nantes (2008) ; the MAMAC in Nice (2009) ; Villa Medici in Rome, Italy (2010) ; the Castle of Chambord and the Cité nationale de l’histoire de l’immigration in Paris (2011) ; the Lambert Collection in Avignon, the Bernard Magrez Institute in Bordeaux and the Von der Heydt Museum of Art in Wuppertal, Germany (2012) ; the Friche de la Belle de mai in Marseille (2013).