With a multicultural and interdisciplinary approach of research, drawing back on various disciplines from history, philosophy and sociology to psycholanalysis, anthropology and ethnology, Kader Attia investigates the perspective that societies have on their history and how past experiences of political unjustice, war and genocide are reflected in the individual psyche, collective memory and politics.
Kader Attia was born in 1970 in the Paris suburbs of Seine-Saint-Denis form parents of Algerian origins. His work is deeply influenced by intercultural influences: having grown up in Paris and the Algerian countryside, he spent some time in Barcelona, in Congo and Venezuela as a young adult. He held his first solo exhibition in Congo in 1996; in 2003 he participated in the 50° Venice Biennale exposing in Italy for the first time. Some of his works can be found at the Tate Modern in London, at the Centre Pompidou and at the ICA of Boston.
Thanks to his broad interest and ongoing research in history, psychology, philosophy and ethnology, he has built an artistic language that also feeds on his North African origins, on his France birth and his cosmopolitan condition as a contemporary artist.
His works interrogate the aesthetics and beliefs of manifold cultures and, above all, the impact of dominant Western societies on the colonial counterparts in the globalized world. His art is composed by sculptures, photographs, collages, installations and videos. (I shifted the sentence that was here to the below paragraph)
The experience with living in different cultures and multi-ethnic societies still influenced by the legacies of Colonialism has encouraged Attia’s interdisciplinary approach of research. Throughout his works he has started exploring the historical past of different societes, especially with respect to experiences of loss, trauma and violence and how these facts have influenced nations and individuals.
Kader Attia has developed the notion of Repair, a concept that he has been exploring in his writings and in his works as a visual artist. A constant in human nature, Repair is something that goes beyond subject and connects gender, science, philosophy and architecture together, but also involves nature, culture and history. The opposite perspective that Western modernists and non-Western traditionalists have on that concept, offers a rich source for his research and is elaborated aesthetically in his visual work.
In 2016, Kader Attia has founded La Colonie, a place in Paris where people can share their ideas, an agora to decolonialise discourses by means of open discussion, that extends his praxis from representation to action.