The Mental Museum

Idris Khan, Between the Lines

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every… stave of Frederick Chopin’s Nocturnes for the piano, 2004

Idris Khan was born in 1978 in Birmingham, UK and is currently a London based photographic artist. He attended the University of Derby and received a Bachlor of Fine Arts and contintued on with a Masters of Fine Art at the Royal College of Art, London. His work, since his notoriety has consisted of multiple layering of similar images, images that are frequently taken from art history itself, often using appropriated work from literature, music and art to create his thematic body. What is so unusual and satisfying about Khan’s work is that the end result is, in a way, a visual representation of what time infact does to a work in history. Let’s take Italian Renaissance painter, Michelangelo for example. Art historians, artists, collectors, patrons and the every day museum goers have studied, discussed, analyzed, admired and even copied his work; his technique, his message, his themes. Years of this. Years of this nature of attention have been earned by hundreds of thosands of intellectuals. Composers’ pieces have been reworked, performed again, mastered, taught and enjoyed over and over across the world and throughout the centuries. Literature as well. Read, studied, even reinterpreted into artwork or film. This revisiting, rethinking, reexperiencing is what Khan seems to capture in his work. The idea of history being ‘His’tory is an element of this work that stares me straight in the face. The core, being the original work, is there and evident and acknowledged, however Khan’s personal touch makes it infact ‘his’story. Reinterpretation in one way or another. And isn’t that what really happens to every story in history?

every…page from the Holy Koran, 2004

(optical illusion: stare at the center and watch it grow)


Written by thementalmuseum

June 2, 2008 at 6:59 pm

Posted in 1

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