Deeply embedded in narratives of creation, mud grounds life in a cycle that always finds its way back into the earth.
Ali Cherri conceives The Book of Mud as an exploration of the past and how it inscribes itself physically: eroding, shaping, reforming and becoming itself through upheaval and destruction.
Artefacts, collected and encased in mudbrick, accompany the book to symbolise this timeless process. Worldly values embodied by these objects are once again “grounded,” returned to the earth from which they came. A silkscreen print visualises a field of mudbricks drying in the sun, uniting earth and water as the building blocks of civilisation.
Unique piece, 2019 | Artifact from the artist’s collection nested in handmade, sun-dried mudbrick and made in France.
Brickyard, 2020 | Silkscreen printed in two colours on 100 gsm Oikos extra white, signed and numbered by the artist. Printed in Beirut by Salim Samara.
Carved beech massif, plywood and MDF painted white host the book and brick with a pullout drawer and a plexiglass lid. Produced by Tanya Elhajj.
About the Author
Ali Cherri works across film and installation, dealing with the psychological repercussions of war, trauma and the paradoxical realities produced through living in an urgent, unpredictable and ever-changing state. His work often blurs the boundary between fact and fiction by employing essayistic and autobiographical narratives.
Cherri’s commissioned works were featured in ‘Phantom Limb,’ an exhibition interrogating lived relationships to material heritage and exhibited at Jameel Arts Centre. Additionally, his film The Digger (2015) screened at the Centre, where he also performed Water Blues, his performance lecture.
About the Publisher
Dongola, an experimental intellectual and cultural venture based in Beirut, creates limited edition art books offering unconventional perspectives on art and contemporary topics in the MENASA region today.”