Khaled Kaddal


06. Apr 26. May 2019

To The Nostrils of Time is multimedia artist Khaled Kaddal’s first international solo exhibition. With a background in sound art and performance, Kaddal combines abstract and deconstructed elements of sound with media like video, sculpture and text.

Kaddal’s main focus is what he calls the socio-political dimension of sound – sounds that refer directly or symbolically to specific social and political events, exploring how sound can connect to auditory memory. In recent years Kaddal has shifted his primary focus from sound to creating multi-sensory installations that display alternated physical realities.

On the first floor at Overgaden Kaddal presents his new installation. To The Nostrils of Time, which integrates sound, light and sculpture. Drawn by the smell of moist earth, visitors are taken into a dark passage leading to the heart of the installation: a hermetically sealed room bathed in an artificial golden glow. The floor is covered by a thick layer of dark earth, and the walls and ceiling with gold foil. A flower-like sculpture made of fragmented mirror pieces stands in the middle. The flower has scattered its seeds, creating sprouts that germinate in the corners. Enveloping the space Kaddal has created a sonic composition thats consists of sound recordings of birds of prey, each of which marks a transition between emotional states.

As a multi-layered work, the installation combines knowledge drawn
from ancient mythology and social theory stemming from two particular sources: Kemetic (Ancient Egyptian) philosophy and political symbolism. To the Nostrils Of Time focuses on the fascination with the raptor as the most enduring symbol of political governance. As civilizations have developed, humans have incarnated the survival tactics of birds of prey, transferring them to political systems in order to dominate, exploit and exercise power. Seeking to release our inner
raptors, Kaddal builds on an ancient Kemetic healing mantra, creating an alternative space for meditation and aesthetic exorcism. The mantra uses the theme of the natural cycle of the sun – from sunrise, to noon, to sunset – transferring them to ethical principles. To ‘arise’, ‘complete’ and ‘come forth’ become symbolic phases representing the potential for human transformation. A process where one can strive to be liberated from past traumas and finding new forms of
meaningful existence.

With To The Nostrils Of Time Kaddal constructs an alternative reality in which a physical and commemorative actuality is transformed into an aesthetic and sensory universe. Through his references to the kemetic notion of time as a cyclical, transcendental entity, his installation seeks to create a balance that can heal the rupture between rational thinking and emotion. The work can thus be seen to confront the accelerated linear time of contemporary society through the creation of a meditative space that embodies an alternative understanding of time.

Khaled Kaddal (b. 1987) is an interdisciplinary artist born in Alexandria, Egypt and based in Berlin.
Using sound, video, sculpture, installation and performance, he interweaves references and symbols
traversing contemporary political events, historical myths, and art history. Kaddal has exhibited and
performed extensively at Valletta European Capital of Culture 2018 (MT); Sharjah Art Foundation,
Sarjah (U.A.E); Palazzo Mora, Venice (IT); The Mosaic Rooms, London (UK); CGP, London (UK); Townhouse
Gallery, Cairo (EG), Galleri Spektrum, Karlsruhe (GE); Nour Festival, London (UK); Generate Festival,
Queensland (AU) and D-CAF Festival, Cairo (EG). He has received awards from both the Sharjah
Art Foundation and the British Council.

Read more