MOCA presents SCREEN: Meriem Bennani, which features two videos by artist Meriem Bennani. The first work FLY will be on view June 7–21 and the second work Life on the CAPS: Intro Animation June 22–July 7.
FLY, featured here as a single-channel video, was originally a multidimensional video installation that was projected on multiple sculptures at MoMA PS1. The work is presented to us through the vantage point of an animated fly, who seamlessly moves across private homes and celebrations and through public malls, parks, and bazaars in Rabat and Fez. Integrating digital animations and characters into the material she shot, Bennani collapses everyday life and rituals with the language of digital space, challenging our perception of what is real and what is cyber.
Life on the CAPS: Intro Animation is an introduction to Bennani’s next body of work, a series of live action chapters set in the future that will depict the inhabitants of CAPS, an island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean where refugees and immigrants ‘illegally’ traversing oceans and borders are held by the state; over the course of three generations, what started as an internment camp on the island of CAPS would develop into a bustling, geographically-isolated megalopolis. The first of these chapters will be shot in Morocco for the Biennale of Moving Images in Geneva. When international travel has been streamlined into teleportation, Life on the CAPS imagines the structures of displacement (physical and psychological) imposed upon immigrants intercepted by the United States. For Bennani, liminality of identification is often what defines diaspora– the CAPS is a physical manifestation of that liminality, as its residents exist between geographic endpoints, states of citizenship, ages, and genders.
Voice : Crotchet Fiona
Music: Bsahtek by Gan Gah
Flash Flow Affordable by Flavien Berger
Sound mix : Brian Goodheart
SCREEN: MERIEM BENNANI is organized by Nevin Kallepalli
Meriem Bennani (b. 1988 in Rabat, Morocco) lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. Juxtaposing and mixing the language of reality TV, documentaries, phone footage, animation, and high production aesthetics, she explores the potential of storytelling while amplifying reality through a strategy of magical realism and humour. She has been developing a shape-shifting practice of films, installations and immersive environments, composed with a subtle agility to misappropriate the clichés of North-African culture. Her work questions our contemporary society and its fractured identities, gender issues and ubiquitous dominance of digital technologies. Bennani’s work has been shown at MoMA PS1, Art Dubai, the Shanghai Biennale, The Jewish Museum and The Kitchen in New York.