Artists  Continent  Asia 

Aziz Hazara 

Bow Echo

The frighteningly beautiful mountain landscape is filled with the stormy roar of the wind and insistent sounds of pipes – and of approaching drones. Embodying both purity and physicality, the boys gradually surround the viewer, almost like angels ready to announce the inevitable. The echoing sounds serve as a score to a story about the cyclical torments and misery of the Great Game. The combination of medieval ethics with bright plastic horns reaches a surrealist resonance with contemporary capitalist ideology in the five-channel video Bow Echo (2019). The powerful wind that blows against the boys’ bodies intermingles with the hungry breaths that the children need to make their harsh trumpet sounds, evoking a mixture of war whoops, pained screams and riotous play. The artist invites us to reflect on the transience of life: even if we know that life is a game limited by time, we still play it with all our might.

Aziz hazara

Bow Echo

Video

Year: 2019

Duration: 4 min 6 

Five channel HD video, colour, sound

Video produced by the Han Nefkens Foundation

BIOGRAPHY

Born 1992, Afghanistan

Works in Afghanistan

Aziz Hazara 

Monument

Monument is looking at the act of celebration/commemoration in the communities in this particular documentation of the event it looks at a suicide bomb attack took place in a tuition center which caused causalities of more than 40 students, right after the event Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) took responsibility of the attack by publishing a photograph of the suicide bomber as a proof of responsibility, politicians condemned the act by issuing condemnation statements on media platforms and local activists too. 

The families of students gathered dead bodies of their loved ones and buried them in a collective grave yard where the location was planned to become park in the coming future. 

Aziz hazara

Monument

Video

Year: 2019

Duration: 5 min 19

Video installation, 2 screens HD video projection, colour, sound 

Video produced by the Han Nefkens Foundation

Aziz Hazara 

Eye in the Sky

Aziz hazara

Eye in the Sky

Video

Year: 2020

Duration: 5 min 10 

Single channel HD video, colour, sound

Video produced by the Han Nefkens Foundation

In Hazara’s Eyes in the Sky (2020), the artist takes on the optics of surveillance and military reconnaissance as he examines one manifestation of children’s play in contemporary Afghanistan: the transformation of war remnants into yet another desert obstacle course. As he attempts to stand at a critical distance in his journey from the personal to the collective, Hazara continues to explore military conflict through the rituals and customs that define and connect Afghanistan’s many fragmented and intermingled ethnic communities. This movement from private to public is also manifest in his choice of filming technique, combining intimate closeups of ordinary details that are painfully familiar to those with a personal experience of the landscape and culture with long-range aerial shots that any viewer can recognise from the media. Eyes in the Sky tells the story of meaningless and useless wars, waged for generations, on foreign territory; the waste they leave behind; and the strength of these people’s hereditary faith in the steadfast power of spells against the evil eye.

Aziz Hazara 

Rehearsal

Aziz hazara

Rehearsal

Video

Year: 2020

Duration: 1 min 05 

Single channel HD video, colour, sound

Video produced by the Han Nefkens Foundation

Hazara’s Rehearsal, premiering here at the Fundació Antoni Tàpies, is deceptively simple at first glance. One boy carries another on his shoulders, as an older child might carry their younger sibling. Meanwhile, the other boy mimes shooting a gun, a perfectly commonplace (albeit problematic) childhood game. Those who are more familiar with military weaponry, however, will immediately recognise the startling accuracy of the boy’s imitation of a Burst Assault Rifle. What exactly are they ‘rehearsing’ for? See their body language. Is the younger boy on the shoulders of the other an expression of care, or is he being sacrificed? What agency does he have left as he quietly and obediently takes up his imaginary rifle, whose shape and sound are so familiar? Their movements are tied together, and the ‘gunner’ becomes an extension of his ‘mount’, in the same way Afghanistan was so frequently used as a pawn and proxy between warring superpowers. Displayed together with Eyes in the Sky, the work forms a diptych of play deprived of innocence and encourages the juxtaposition of the two ‘games’ together. What is missing from these sparse and barren landscapes? Who is missing? What does it mean for the boys to play at ‘war’ when war has surrounded them since birth?

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