Hassan Hajjaj

La Caravane

Somerset HouseTerrace Rooms, South WingStrand, London WC2R 1LA
4 September 2017 – 7 January 2018

From 5 October, Somerset House and 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair, in association with Vigo Gallery presents Hassan Hajjaj: La Caravane, the British Moroccan artist’s first show in London for seven years. The exhibition will continue throughout Somerset's House winter season.

 

Using portraiture (photography and video), installation, sculpture, and performance, Hajjaj aims to seduce the viewer whist confronting culture-specific beliefs and values. His multi-layered works  fuse traditional and contemporary North African culture with familiar Western imagery and iconography through appropriation and adaption.

 

His artworks reflect his neo-nomadic lifestyle and the relationships he has formed with a variety of characters along the way, from musicians to artists and athletes to street performers.Hajjaj is perhaps best known for his colourful portraits, including the Kesh’s Angels series, from which there will be several new works in the exhibition. Blending the glossy aesthetic of a fashion shoot with Moroccan tradition and street culture, these witty and poignant images, although outwardly light-hearted, challenge Western perceptions of the hijab and female disempowerment.

 

Another new body of work in the exhibition is My Rock Stars: Volume 2, a nine screen installation of dapper musicians. Each occupies an individual screen and takes it in turns to play their instrument, while the other performers turn to watch. 

 

A number of public events will accompany Hassan Hajjaj's exhibition. Somerset House is delighted to welcome writer and broadcaster Ekow Eshun to join Hassan Hajjaj in conversation on 5 October. Eshun will explore the multifaceted nature of Hajjaj's work, and investigate how the artist assimilates his different worlds into his work. Eshun has also contributed to a full colour catalogue to coincide with the exhibition, available at £9.95.

 

On 6 Jauary a free special event will take place to celebrate the final weekend of the exhibition and Somerset House's season of African Art, including live music and a family workshop inspired by elements of Hajjaj's work.

 

selected works

My Rock Stars: Vol 2
2017
Khadija
2010
Rider
2010
African Boy Sittin’
2015
Michael Garnette Sittin’
2014
Odd 1 Out
2000
Kesh Angels
2010
Asheber
2014
S.P. Bikini
2015
Romancia
2010

My Rock Stars: Vol 2

2017Digital file and 9 frames. Screens and technical backup display system not provided but work sold with a list of elements to purchase locally.116.5 x 75.5 x 7 cm / 45 7/8 x 29 3/4 x 2 3/4 in

Khadija

2010Frame: Wood sprayed yellow with empty and clean Fanta cans Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond135.9 x 93.4 cm / 53 1/2 x 36 3/4 in

Rider

2010Frame: Wood sprayed white gloss with empty and clean stock packaging Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond62 x 90 cm / 24 3/8 x 35 3/8 in

African Boy Sittin’

2015Frame: Wood sprayed white gloss with new empty HH yellow tea boxes with red fatma hand Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond111.8 x 76.2 cm / 44 x 30 in
Hassan Hajjaj, African Boy Sittin, 2015

Nana

2009Frame : Wood sprayed white with green sardines tins Print : Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond136 x 93 cm / 53 1/2 x 36 5/8 in

Michael Garnette Sittin’

2014Frame: Wood sprayed white gloss with empty and clean coconut peanuts tins Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond111.8 x 76.2 cm / 44 x 30 in

Odd 1 Out

2000Frame: Walnut with empty and clean car paint tins Print: Digital C-type on 3mm dibond 132.7  x 93.7  cm / 52 1/4 x 36 7/8 in

Kesh Angels

2010Frame: Wood sprayed white gloss with empty and clean car paint tins. Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond94 x 130 cm / 37 x 51 1/8 in

M

2010Frame: Wood sprayed white gloss with empty and clean Aicha tomato cans Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond 133 x 93.5  cm / 52 3/8 x 36 3/4 in

Asheber

2014Frame: Wood sprayed white gloss with empty and clean coconut milk cans Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond111.8 x 76.2 cm / 44 x 30 in

S.P. Bikini

2015Frame: Wood sprayed white gloss with empty and clean Aicha tomato cans Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond111.8  x 76.2 cm / 44 x 30 in

Romancia

2010Frame: Wood sprayed white gloss with empty and clean stock packaging Print: Metallic lambda on 3mm dibond 48.3 x 72.4  cm / 19 x 28 1/2 in