Skip to main content

Love Dijla

In my current work, I use different interventions to highlight the imaginary world I want to create. I do this by printing a silky grid along a photograph, and other concepts, to achieve layers of different temporal eras that seem both to come together and depart simultaneously. The Tigris River is the subject that combines the works I present in this exhibition; such works, which came into existence through the use of different media on fabrics of different sizes, and revolve around the alteration of the Tigris River from a space of beautiful memories into an arena stained with sectarian conflict and policy, thus overwhelming my dreams. I was born near this river and watch the eternity of its rapidly flowing water, carrying boats, wandering between Karkh and Rasafa every day in the placid, peaceful life of the people of Bagdad. This transports me from what I know of it now; it is a river that conceals anonymous massacred victims, feeding the fish in its waters. A nightmare resonates within the river which turned into ink and blood at the time of the Mongols, it is now turning into blood and radiant toxic substances. The clash of this age of occupation can be heard against the voice of Jawahiri when he addressed the Tigris as an expatriate: From a far distance, I salute your foot; salute me. Oh thou giving Tigris, the mother of groves, I, thirsty, salute your foot so as to shelter Like thirsty doves, between mud and water. Oh thou giving Tigris, a spring, I depart From time to time: on hatred to hatred Of the springs of pure water, I left none but approached Successively, yet, none would quench my thirst.

Nazar Yahya
August 2010