interviewed by Samar Martha, January 2007

Please describe your work 'On-Going Tale'.

My work addresses human relations and the interplay of domination and power is its starting point. How do values present themselves in the context of the modern world where man's ambition to refine himself is in conflict with the morals of a tradition that man regards as an important characteristic of being human?

I am interested in how habitat, atmosphere and culture have the power to turn man into a friend of himself or a victim of himself. And both of these ends exist as a co-term together, since the presence of one highlights the other. Or one of them acts as a diagram for measuring the other.

So what is the moral message you are trying to convey in this work, in your artwork in general? Is there a message you are trying to get across?

I don't regard my works as having an aim for a moral message. They are more of an investigation of the issues mentioned above.
In my works, there is usually a theme that brings the work together. During the process of the work, another idea is born that gives a twist and rebels against the main idea but they all fall under the same concept.

I use various themes that co-exist with, and define man in general. Themes that usually challenge our existence and power, such as fear, death etc. My interest is to create a tension in a piece by juxtaposing two elements in the work.

In the series of video animation pieces, I work with a black pen to create the figures and objects from simple repetitive shapes and lines. Just as the ink and pen is used to write history in words, I write the history of the incidents in the form of lines and shapes, creating a language of signs that are inherent to the video itself. I try to work the quality of the simple black lines to form abstract shapes and objects that are integral to the work. In this series of works, the animation presents itself as a kind of microscopic world that invites you to watch as a god or as a child.

The question of scale is important. It relates to the universality of things. Just as the technology and different modes of representation had made different channels in the world seem more accessible and distances shorter, it is important for me to place my animation at everyone's disposal and to create an intimate relation between the work and the spectator. Just as forms when arranged in a certain pattern may look delighting and eye catching, the video yields to absolute forms sometimes, to give way to the content on other occasions.

The idea is that modern forms of representation have delivered to us the world in the palm of our hands, but have also invested in us, due to the overload of images that cover a whole range of diversity, a quality of looking or absorbing information indifferently. So what quality in these representations catches the eye or evokes a feeling? Is it subject of the representation or is it the form? My interest in a broader term is to investigate this idea in relation to stories that are simulated from reality.

Since modes of representation have made it possible for any person to be informed of what's happening on the other side of the globe without him being physically present, a question of interest would be, what kind of experience has it delivered to him? Does that experience offered to him act as a partial extension to the real physical experience? Or has the represented experience replaced the real one and acquired its credibility (status)? What happens is that all these spots or cultures and their daily incidents, their crises, glory, are connected together and informed by each other through these modes of representation.

What I'm trying to do with my work is use these modes of representation to bring simulated stories that are derived from a context of the human condition, and make it available as a story of a world or culture in the palm of the hand of everyone.

What are you working on currently?

My future projects involve a further investigation of the ideas explained above. I am currently working on two video installations that proliferated from 'An On-Going Tale'. The present one I am working on is called 'Of the Two Continents: The Real and the Ideal' It's a video that simulates human proximities in two given spaces. One of them hectic, the other enigmatic. The form of the installation, meaning the screen boundaries, act as an integral part of the work, and the characters are allowed to relate freely to these boundaries whether they choose to rebel against it or to use it for defining their relation. A lot of emphasis will be stressed on the aesthetic of shapes and how their accumulation and formation on the screen, regardless to the actual incidents, captures the viewer's eye, and mimics the content of the video. The video consists of two parallel screenings on the floor.