FOREVER IS A CURRENT EVENT: Anuar Khalifi
The Third Line is pleased to present Anuar Khalifi’s first solo exhibition at the gallery, with works on canvas exploring the exchange between tradition and the contemporary world.
Embodying both the stylistic elements and socio-political spirit of neo-impressionism, Khalifi equips his paintings with metaphors and symbols which bridge visuals of the past with that of a globalised contemporary culture.
Often inspired by the lyrical writings of iconic musicians, Forever Is A Current Event derives its title from a verse by the acclaimed rapper yasiin bey:
Save the date.
Forever is a current event.
We will not pass this way again,
No time to pretend.
Khalifi's emotive works are layered with complexity and saturated with colors that act as a visual confrontation of dysfunctional systems, misrepresentations of media, and corporate agendas. Although his work may first present itself as naïve and playful, Khalifi leaves a trail of subtle hints reminding the viewer that each painting is loaded with topical social discourse. He often achieves this by altering small details that reward the keen eye with an unexpected play on brand iconography or iconic imagery from current events.
The figures in the artist's paintings are typically autobiographical in nature; they have grown from adolescents to young adults, to the occasional older male. These works offer glimpses into the lives of male characters that are placed in absurd settings, either caught red-handed in a playful act or captured in the fleeting stillness prior to some mischief. In an open invitation for the viewer to engage and complete the narrative, Khalifi's works depict brief moments in a story left incomplete.