At Circa, the artist proposes a theatre of shadows stretching out over the floor of the small gallery. Sheets of plywood with laser cut-out shapes hang at various heights at the heart of the gallery, in an ordered imperfection, a functional chaos; suspended like the country caught in an impasse, a place where, while waiting for spring, it is necessary to survive all the same. The forms cut from the wood represent elements of discord: characters such as the mullahs, leaders of the religious repression, the tanks that must not to be approached, the armed soldiers, bad guys, the demonstrators, tired of hiding in order to live, the ninjas, both mysterious and dangerous, the young girls, we can imagine as princesses, and the firearms, an arsenal of ordinary rifles, proof that all can truly degenerate.
A fascinating spectacle of light appears from under the cut-outs of the various characters piled up on the sheets of wood. The suspended wooden negatives oversee the actors of a potential drama, while a positive place forms on the floor, exposing a nightmarish chaos, similar to when the imagination of a child, momentarily perverted by fear, allows her to see the mobile suspended above her bed and its monstrous shadow projected on the wall, two closely linked realities. The invasion of light on the floor tells the story of the street, life in disarray, liberty in deadlock. The patterns repeat, entangle, overlap, combine and erase; the repetition and intrusion common in Sayeh’s work function like an enormous labyrinth, difficult to escape. Here in the innermost recesses both magnificent and horrific, one gets lost. This labyrinth of shadows is a reminder of the political and ideological intricacies of the artist’s native country.
Extract from Cuttings, Marc-Antoine K. Phaneuf’s text .