galerie les Chantiers Boite Noire

Abdelkader Benchamma

In Abdelkader Benchamma’s work, drawing is envisaged as a form of writing. Well known for the great delicacy of execution, he uses simple but precise lines to illustrate his thoughts. Utilizing felt tip pen and ink without any draft, he exhibits his drawings from sketch book to situ and wall intervention. The virtuosity and sobriety of Abdelkader’s style shows incongruous events, animated by a wide range of dynamics. The drawings become a privileged space for situations in which different elements, alive or unanimated, are submitted to tensions, levitation, contrary movements and mute dialogues. He invents furniture which is able to cross the wall, unstable architectures, and a nature capable of crushing and swallowing. Those natural spaces are sometimes occupied by hordes of characters. They become the very place of racing, gathering and fighting with uncertain motives. Furniture, human figures and plants live in one universe which responds to the same puzzling and disconcerting laws, an unsettling universe in which Abdelkader’s subjects seem to be victims of unidentified forces. In Abdelkader’s work, nature is pictured by an arrangement of fluid recurring patterns, stuck together in order to recreate the strength of mountain landscapes and the abundance of plants. The winding graphics of vegetation, the treatment of human and organic elements mixed in piles, enhance the anxiety feelings of different particular situations. His use of accumulation of forms, their repetitive pattern leads to infinity and the impression of saturation that comes out of it, empowers the drawing with the capacity to project the spectators beyond the page as though they are reading a script. Through these surreal scenarios, viewers can also see the obscure harmony in chaos, a world that we are actually living in. Abdelkader deals with absurdity and measures the visual effects with high precision. The purity and intensity of the line in the scenes express immediate and strong atmospheres, provoking the questioning of a stable reality.


Guillemette Naessens et Nadine Maurice - Asterides, Marseille - Mars 2007