Artificial Nostalgia

Artist Statement

I grew up watching animation since cartoons back then used to be shown at certain hours of the day and were interrupted by the News. That was before we had devoted channels for both. In 2016 I focused my work which discusses nostalgia using elements from my childhood. From war to animation, analyzing the context in which these sciences I grew up watching occurred.

In one typical work, I collected a number of valuable original cels and constructed collages combining them with other various collectibles to create this series. Animation cels are plastic transparent sheets animators used to draw on, using one sheet for the outline and another one attached to it with the colors; the two sheets were used to create one 2D frame. Layering memories on memories of different categories, I simply began noticing links between these animations and the context in which they were aired. Specifically when it reached the Arab TV and got dubbed in certain countries such as Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and Kuwait. The link is the wars these countries have witnessed.

More generally in my work, I use critical materials which I collected over the years from memorabilia to historical and discarded objects that were sold on eBay and various websites. Then I create collages, videos, and sculptures using these materials which are constructed mainly of memories that were turned into commodities. One link was present in most of these findings which is ‘drawing’ as a way of delivering information visually that was clear in most leaflets, soldiers notes, and patriotism campaigns.

We live in an age where finding the excess of history is obtainable. I create work that takes the observer back to the context in which he first encountered these objects in a world devastated by wars, questioning the truth of nostalgic response and false memory.

Abdullah Al-Jahdhami Shaweesh Husain collage with found objects .png

Abdullah Al-Jahdhami, Hussain, 2019

Collage with found objects

Abdullah Al-Jahdhami Shaweesh Sanshirō Collage with found object .png

Abdullah Al-Jahdhami, Sanshirō, 2019

Collage with found objects

Abdullah Al-Jahdhami Shaweesh Flightless Firefly Collage with found objects .png

Abdullah Al-Jahdhami, Flightless Firefly, 2019

Collage with found objects