Kader Attia (born 1970 in Dugny, France; lives and works in Paris and Berlin).


Cooked couscous on wooden table and digital prints on paper.

Untitled (Ghardaïa) 2009 is a scale model of the ancient city Ghardaïa in the M’zab Valley in Algeria. The model is made from cooked couscous, a staple food of North Africa, and sits on a wooden table or on the floor. The square and circular blocks cluster towards the centre of the terrain, which is marked by a tall tower. All the buildings comprise variations on simple geometric forms. The model is accompanied by three works on paper: portraits of the Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier (1887–1965) and of the French architect Fernand Pouillon (1912–1986) and a print out of the UNESCO Advisory Body Evaluation of the M’zab Valley as a world heritage site. These three digital prints unframed and are attached to the walls surrounding the sculpture.” – Tate Modern

“Le Corbusier came, has taken so many ideas, and then architecture and art history has very rarely acknowledged that. So, the real question is to also understand, talking about architecture, how important is the city of Ghardaïa. […] A way for me to proceed in a sort of repair of the amnesia we are living in, to just slightly repair this gap within the Western modern psyche about non-Western traditional cultures. […] So, it is an ironic dinner that I’m giving to Le Corbusier and Pouillon. I could have named this installation “Bon appétit, Mr. Corbusier.” – Kader Attia

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