Khaled Barakeh

* 1976 in Damaskus, SY R
lives in Frankfurt am Main

In some of his works, Khaled Barakeh investigates the civil war that has been raging in Syria since spring 2011. In Regarding the Pain of Others (2013) for example he converts a “Na’ash” – an object similar to a stretcher – into a throne lying on the floor, placing the remaining pieces of wood and the resulting sawdust carefully next to it. In Syria, the “Na’ash” has a ritual function at burials; its purpose is to accompany the departed into the world of the dead. Just as the “Na’ash” fulfills a transitional function, in a sense Barakeh’s work is the symbolic reshaping of an authoritarian and violent present into a peaceful, decent future. The item of furniture lying on its back and the remnants of wood scattered next to the overturned throne all bear witness to this transition. They themselves carry the marks of the past in them.

“Damascus 15 / 02 / 2012 19 : 47: 31” takes its cue from a photograph of a victim
tortured by the police in the capital of Syria. Barakeh has isolated the image of a wound from the photograph, greatly enlarged it and used it as a reference for a
print. Spread across five individual large sheets of paper, this imprint becomes increasingly faint and finally fades altogether. The gradual disappearance of this violently imposed injury from one sheet to another can be seen as an analogy for the acts of violence not portrayed here but still taking place in Syria.

Frankfurter Kunstverein

Regarding the Pain of Others, 2013 and Damascus 15/02/2012 19:47:31, 2013
Installation view
photo: Jens Steingaesse