27 February 2024–25 May 2024

An Ode to Intertwined Histories

By Rachid Koraïchi

Part of Alserkal Art Week

In an ode to Elmarsa Gallery’s longstanding collaboration with Artist Rachid Koraïchi, an exhibition that revisits a collection of his work.

Starts 27 February 2024

Ends 25 May 2024

Venue Elmarsa Gallery

Warehouse 23


The exhibition will encompass a breadth of disciplines that Koraïchi has enmeshed into his practice. This exhibition seeks to showcase his abiding fascination with the creation of deeply layered seams. Showcasing the iconic site-specific installation comprising ofLes Prieurs alongside Les Priants, the two towering polished bronze and green patina sculptures and a selection of the twenty-one unique Corten steel sculptures will fill the space, casting delicate and shifting shadows. Accompanying the sculptures will be a body of two-dimensional work ranging in medium and highlighting Koraïchi’ s ability to insight a moment of reflection to the onlooker, all the while making art for his own intellectual pleasures. Draped along the lengths of the galleries three-meter walls will be the encased silk organza tapestries, embroidered with glyphs that are brought together to encapsulate the timeless themes of the changing seasons and the shifting of the skies from day to night.

The complexity and depth of Rachids storytelling are seen throughout, as if a thread running through each idea. Demonstrating his desires and apt abilities for storytelling, Koraïchis alphabet of memory is anchored in the world of glyphs and cyphers, where he nurses his fascination for texts function, aesthetics and cultural significance. From a line of thinking that acknowledges the amputations that peoples face from their past identities, he draws from his Sufi heritage. Born into a writing civilization, Koraïchi speaks often of belonging entirely to writing, wanting to reveal the profound inner secrets of texts. With texts by great mystic poets and writers such as Rûmî, Ibn Arabi, Attar and Rabia Al Adawya often referenced in his work, Rachid Koraïchi has also collaborated with a number of contemporary poets and authors, among them Mahmoud Darwish, Mohamed Dib, Jamel Eddine Bencheikh, René Char, Nancy Huston and Michel Butor, creating intricately mapped out artwork through the writing’s inspiration.

About Rachid Koraïchi

Rachid Koraïchi, born in Ain Beida, Algeria in 1947, currently resides and works between Tunisia and France. Koraïchi’ s artistic explorations encompass a diverse range of media, including ceramics, textiles, various metals, and painted works on silk, paper, or canvas. Embracing a multi-disciplinary practice as an extension of prayer and divine reverence, his artworks are infused with ideographic symbolism and contemplative forms, drawing inspiration from a myriad of calligraphic traditions and a rich blend of influences, from Chinese ideograms to pre- Islamic Berber and Tuareg art forms. Koraïchi delves into the interconnections between metaphysics, spirituality, and aesthetics, making it an exercise in the process of transformation. He has been featured in prestigious exhibitions, including the 47th and 49th Venice Biennale, and Word into Art at the British Museum in 2006. His works have been widely showcased worldwide and are held in numerous private and public collections, such as the British Museum in London, the National Museum for African Art in Washington, and the Museum of Islamic Arts in Doha. Apart from his professional projects, Rachid Koraïchi has also dedicated his efforts to personal ventures, such as the Garden of Africa. The Garden of Africa, entirely financed by Koraïchi, stands as a memorial resting place in Zarzis, Southern Tunisia. Its primary purpose is to provide a dignified final burial ground for the countless migrants who tragically lost their lives in the treacherous waters of the Mediterranean Sea.