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Three large freestanding photographs of rock formations displayed in the gallery.

Zineb Sedira

Can't You See the Sea Changing?

Sat 29 April - Sun 6 August 2023

This major solo exhibition by Zineb Sedira, developed in collaboration with De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill-on-Sea, was her first project in UK public galleries for 12 years.

Beginning from Sedira’s fascination with the sea as an enigmatic yet geopolitically charged space, as well as the coastal contexts of Dundee Contemporary Arts and De La Warr Pavilion, the exhibition spanned a period from 2008 to the present day, bringing together photography, installation, film and archival material.

Sedira draws upon her personal history and close connection to Algeria, France and the UK to explore ideas of identity, gender, environment and collective memory. Throughout her career, she has become a leading voice in addressing the question of what it means to live between different cultures, often bringing together autobiographical narration, fiction and documentary genres. 

Through these varying approaches to storytelling, Sedira interrogates what she refers to as ‘spaces where mobility expires’, exploring the ability or otherwise of individuals to depart, return, escape, or exist in transit between certain lands and identities. Whilst her narratives are embedded with histories of migration and exile, particularly in relation to her home countries of Algeria and France, through her work Sedira considers what it means to be transported through visionary acts of imagination, acts that carry us to different places through the merging of past and present time frames.  

Zineb Sedira artist video

Four large screens in a darkened room showing images of rock formations in the sea.

About the artist

Zineb Sedira (born 1963, Paris), lives in London and works between Algeria, Paris, and London. Recent solo exhibitions include Bildmuseet (Umeå, Sweden, 2021), SMoCA (Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art) (US, 2021), Jeu de Paume (Paris, 2019), IVAM‑Institut Valencià d’Art Modern (Spain, 2019), Beirut Art Center (Lebanon, 2018), Sharjah Art Foundation Art Spaces (UAE, 2018), Art On the Underground (London, 2016). She has previously shown in institutions such as Tate Britain, Centre Pompidou, Mori Museum, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Musée d’Art Moderne of Algiers, Brooklyn Museum, Mathaf – Arab Museum of Modern Art, Gwangju Museum of Art, and MMK Museum für Mordern Kunst, as well as in biennials and triennials, including the Venice Biennale (2001 and 2011), the Triennial for photography and video at the Institute of Contemporary Photography in New York (2003), the Sharjah Biennale (2003 and 2007), the Folkestone Triennial (2011), New Orleans’ international art exhibition (2017) and the Liverpool Biennial (2021). 

Sedira represented France at the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia (2022) and was awarded a special mention for her exhibition titled Dreams Have No Titles.

Exhibition Notes

 Listen to an audio version of the Exhibition Notes for Zineb Sedira: Can't You See the Sea Changing? here.

Click here to download the Exhibition Notes for Zineb Sedira: Can't You See the Sea Changing?
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Exhibition images

A gallery wall, against which are several photographs of the sea, shelves containing ephemera including model ships and shells.
Photograph by Ruth Clark
Items on a shelf, including a model boat, sardine tin, a lamp made of a large shell and a print of ships at sea.
Photograph by Ruth Clark
Many large-scale, illuminated photographs in a gallery, some free-standing, some mounted on walls. All showing images relating to the sea.
Photograph by Ruth Clark
Large photographs in the gallery as part of Zineb Sedira's exhibition.
Photograph by Ruth Clark

Gallery Walkthrough | Zineb Sedira: Can't You See the Sea Changing?